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Edited by Mabian W. Smith 






by Gladys A. Reiohard 







A brief statement of the genesis of this grammar and an evaluation 
of the extant works on the Navaho language are outlined in the 
Introduction. The work is a byproduct of a project to investigate 
some of the inner meanings of Navaho religion, a study I felt could 
not be accomplished without some interpretation of the language. 
I therefore identified myself with a Navaho family, only two of whose 
members spoke English. I lived with this family for a total of more 
than three y% r s from 1930 to 1939. Later, in 1944, 1 spent a summer 
as a clerk v\ a trading post at Pinyon where hardly a word of 
English was heard because the Navaho who knew it were at war. By 
this time I knew the pattern of Navaho and had a large vocabulary; 
I used the opportunity to test the vernacular in practice. 

In the summer of 1934 I taught adult Navaho interpreters to 
write their language at the Hogan School which consisted of students 
and instructor only, the students being also the informants. The 
results of this experience, conducted under the auspices of the 
Department of Indian Affairs, are reflected in several ways: The 
students were made aware of the necessity of keeping forms to the 
same paradigms (which, incidentally, they loved). Since they came 
from many parts of the Reservation, the foundations were laid for 
the materials on the diversity of the language, and consequently, 
the reasons for similarities as well as differences and relationship of 
forms. Not the least of the results of the Hogan School was the 
interest aroused in many interpreters who have since been most 
helpful. Of these AB was the most analytic and his explanations have 
almost invariably checked with materials subsequently gathered. 

The following is a brief sketch of the interpreters who contributed 
most, and of their strength and weaknesses. Throughout the work I 
am writing initials for the source of forms and explanations. It 
should be remembered that many Navaho, whether educated in 
White schools or not, are tremendously interested in analyzing 
words and in constructing unusual and metaphoric utterances, 
which sometimes lead to punning. To this characteristic I attribute 
the explanation of their unusual ability to discern the composition 
and meaning of elements that have been thoroughly disguised by 

AB (Adolph Bitanny), orphaned in early childhood, lived with his 
maternal grandmother who, setting a high value on her language and 



tradition, drilled her grandson in "classical" Navaho. They played 
games with forms and meanings, and the grandmother inculcated 
the interest in the language which so many years later became the 
key to my analysis. AB has a keen ear and is very particular about 
subtle differentiations for which he assigns reasons. His interpeta- 
tions almost always stand up according to old Navaho patterns, 
particularly the texts of old men ; he almost never gives a false or 
folk etymology. He is an ^-speaker, his texts and transcriptions 
being full of x J s and h's, not always accepted by others. The one 
weakness in his writings is his acceptance of some rules prematurely 
determined by his white instructors, especially his negligence in 
writing, though not in pronouncing, nasalized sounds and tone 
related to nasalization. He has some tendency also to reconstruct 
forms rather than to write the sounds influenced by contact, for 
instance, si'd for sa'q. The rules of assimilation and a great many 
other data serve as a check on this shortcoming. 

DD (Delia Degrote of Thoreau) gave me many expressions in the 
vernacular that later turned out to demonstrate diversity and to 
determine the differences between cessatives and repetitives. 

FH (Frank Harper of Klagito) has a large vocabulary in Navaho 
and English. His translations are thoughtful and usually reliable. 
His analyses sometimes leave much to be desired. He has contributed 
some interesting and amusing folk etymologies which are very 
illuminating. He was especially good at differentiating homonyms 
or near-homonyms. He does not have much practice in keeping 
paradigmatic forms in line, but he came into the picture after they 
had been worked out, and was used primarily for other purposes. 
His knowledge of Navaho tradition and lore, his love for the lan- 
guage, and his extensive experience on many parts of the Reserva- 
tion were of inestimable help. He is an x- and ^-speaker; his forms 
match almost invariably those of AB and HP's family which form 
the foundation of my analysis. 

JC (John Curley of Ganado) was primarily an interpreter of 
ethnology (except religion). He has a devious mind and I learned 
much from him because his reasoning was always indirect. In- 
direction is almost a Navaho (if not an Indian) tenet, and I consider 
it in many cases an infallible check on certain problems that defy 
formulation and direct questioning. 

MC (Marie Curley of Ganado) was my dependable mentor and 
guide. She is the late Red Point's daughter who taught me to weave 
and served as a buffer when I most needed it. She led me through 
my baby steps in Navaho. Like DD, she told me "how to say so and 
so." Neither she nor TC, her husband, tried analysis; both simply 
told me was what was what, and most important, corrected mistakes. 

RT (Ruby Tallman) lived at Red Point's for much of the time 
I was there. I have used her expressions primarily for comparison. 


TC (Tom Curley of Ganado) is MC's husband who took serious 
responsibility for my welfare and education in Navaho affairs. He 
direct^ m y travels, gave advice, and checked on terms I asked 
about w ith no attempt at giving reasons. If he did not know what 
I asked for, he found out and reported back. 

Wfy (William Morgan of Two Wells) has collaborated with Robert 
Youn* w hose work I have mentioned in 1. He is in the class of 
AB, j) U t his experience with old Navaho is not extensive. He 
has a a insatiable interest in extending his knowledge, understands 
analy 3 i s W el\ } and learns very rapidly. He does not differentiate in 
his mi n d some intricate overlapping forms, as the cessatives and 
repetitives, but the forms he writes naively without attempting 
to an a iy Ze are checks on these omissions. He, too, often neglects 
to wiite nasalization and some related tones, having been influ- 
enced by the same rules as AB. Otherwise his records are almost 
perfect. WM has saved me hours of time because of his understand- 
ing of the grammatical problems. We could go directly to the 
needed form instead of having to fish for it through interminable 
explanations and digressions. I am sure he would agree with me in 
attributing his value to the fine training given him by Robert 

XOUng g WM is next an ce speaker. 

Roman Hubbell is the only white man whose Navaho I have 
relied upon. I have abbreviated his name as RH for convenience, 
because he has to some extent served as an informant. He has a 
keen respect for evidence, and to him I owe certain insights on 
subtle questions which could never have been understood by a 
Navaho, particularly because the Navaho could not have under- 
stood the cultural aspects of the problem. The references to RH 
are few, but have proved extremely valuable, particularly as clues. 

To these persons and to many others with whom contacts may 
have been more brief, and also to the many medicine men whose 
instructions were often explained in Navaho, I acknowledge my 

I deeply appreciate the help of Professor George Herzog, now of 
Indiana University, who with unfailing patience taught me to 
distinguish Navaho tones. His greatest achievement was to make 
me aware of the glides in my own vowels, which are intolerable in 

Despite the criticisms of 1.7-1.26., I feel deeply obligated to the 
late Edward Sapir who gave unsparingly of his time when I was 
first studying Navaho. The fact that I have come to different 
conclusions from his has no relation to his kindness and generosity. 
Harry Hoijer, and others of Sapir 's students at the University of 
Chicago, also helped greatly with their notes and discussions. 

I am grateful to Professors Alfred L. Kroeber and Andre Marinet 
of Columbia University for advice about the format of certain parts 


of this work. The conclusions and final decisions are, however, my 
sole responsibility. 

For comfortable and stimulating circumstances under which the 
work was finally brought to a conclusion I wish to thank the Museum 
of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, and all its staff. 

April, 1951 Gladys A. Reichard 

Barnard College, Columbia University 


If any apology is needed for what may seem to be an undue use of ab- 
breviations, it is because of the Navaho language itself. A reader will not get 
far in this description before he realizes that he must conceive of categories 
which may be new even to expert linguists. For convenience, certain symbols 
have been devised to save repetition. The following are abbreviations used in 
the phonology and grammar : 

ag. agent 

att. attitude 

C consonant 

C, glottalized consonant 

*C glottalized consonant preceded by glottal stop 

caus. causative 

cer. ceremony, ceremonial 

cess. cessative 

compl. completive 

cont. continuative 

cust. customary 

fut. future 

gen. general 

i some, someone, something 

I independent pronoun 

inc. inceptive 

mom. momentary, momentaneous 

myth. mythology, mythological 

O object of verb or postposition 

ob j . object 

opt. optative 

pass. passive 

pf. perfective 

pi. plural 

pres. present 

prog. progressive 

prol. prolongative 

rec. reciprocal 

rec. ef. reciprocal effect 

rep. repetitive 

rep. ac. repetitive action 

rep. asp. repetitive aspect 

spec. specific 

subj. subject 

s self 

t things (supernatural things) 

T type stem 

uni. uniform 

V vowel 

V* long vowel 

^ vowel with high tone 


V"* long vowel with high tone 

V nasalized vowel 

V high nasalized vowel 

V- long high nasalized vowel 

Numbers have been used to indicate the persons — 1, 2, 3, (3), 4 — all are 
explained in 10.64-10.73. Combinations of numbers, indicate a combination 
of subject-object pronominal prefix, for example, 3-3 "he moves it,*' "she 
hears him," etc. ; 3-i "he moves something;" i-3 "someone moves it;" (3) by i 
"it is moved by someone" (8.23 ff.). 

A number without a letter refers to the singular; preceded by D a number 
means the person in the dual ; preceded by P a number means the person in 
the plural. 

Abbreviations have also been used for textual material ; they refer to the 
initials of informants as described in the Preface, or to items of the Biblio- 
graphy : 

AB Adolph Bitanny (word of mouth), or Bitanny 1941. 

Ad Adah66niligfi (the first number refers to the year, the second to 

the month of publication, the last number to the page). 

BS Reichard, Big Star Chant (unpublished manuscript). 

DD Delia Degrote. 

EW llaile 1938 (Enemy Way).* 

FH Frank Harper. 

FS Young-Morgan 1948 (Function and Signification). 

FW Haile 1943 (Flintway).* 

HC Reichard 1944 (Hail Chant).* 

NT Sapir-Hoijer (Navaho Texts).* 

Ph Hoijer 1945c (Phonology). 

Pr Reichard 1943 (Prayer).* 

RH Roman Hubbell. 

SCE Reichard Shooting Chant Evil (unptiblished manuscript). 

WE Reichard, Chant of Waning Endurance (unpublished manuscript). 

WM William Morgan (personal communication). 

YM Young-Morgan, 1943, Navaho -English Dictionary. 

YME Young-Morgan, 1943, English-Navaho Dictionary. 

YMG Young-Morgan, 1943, Grammar. 

In references marked with an asterisk (*) the first number refers to the 
page, the second to the line. 


For lexical purposes the following arrangement is used : the short neutral 
vowel is placed first, next the long neutral vowel, next the high vowel, the 
high long vowel, the vowel with rising tone, the long vowel with rising tone, 
the vowel with falling tone, the long vowel with falling tone; the nasalized 
vowel, the nasalized long vowel, the high nasalized vowel, the long, high 
nasalized vowel, the nasalized vowel with rising tone, the long nasalized 
vowel with rising tone, the nasalized vowel with falling tone, the long na- 
salized vowel with falling tone. 

The vowels would thus appear in the following order, which is worked out 
for their occurrence in any position: a, a-, a, d«, &, &•, d, d' t q, q- t q, <£•, #, #•, 
q> §•, e, e-, i 9 4-, $, $•, e, e>, e, e-, £ f , & £•, (, £•, i, v, I, f , i, i*, i, £', % {•> {, 
i'> h V> i> t'> o, o*, <5, d-, <5, <5-, 6, 6; q, Q-, g, ?-, 0, (5-, $, 0-. 

The consonant arrangement is : -, h, 6, w, w, m, rrl, d, t, f, n t ri, y, y, g, 
k, #, Jew, y, x, yw, xw, z f s, dz, ts, ti, j, c, dj, ic, it, I, I, dl, tl, ti. 






1.7-1.26. The sapir school of athabaskan 4 


3-3.140. PHONOLOGY 13 

3.1. JiawELS 13 

3.7. Syl labic n " 15 

3.8. Con sonants 16 

3.9-3.14. Glottalization . . 17 

3.15-3.19. Aspiration and non -aspiration 19 

3.20-3.21. Labialization 20 

3.22-3.140. Assimilation 20 

3.26-3.33. Assimilation due to mechanical change 22 

3.34-3.38. M echanical change of tone 24 

3.39. Gl ide consonants 26 

3.40-3.44. Jlowel or consonant loss 26 

3.45-3.133. _ Sou nd changes due to morphology 28 

3.45-3.48. Stem and stem complex 28 

3.49-3.53. Rel ationship between vowel and consonant. 29 

3.54-3.189. Consonant combination 31 

3.82-3.97. -c-first personal pronoun 35 

3.98-3.111. ^-perfective 37 

3.112-3.133. Final h 40 

3.134-3.135. Tone change and assimilation 43 

3.136-3.140. Interrelationship of phonetic processes 43 

4-4.36. THE WORD 46 

5-5.114. THE NOUN 56 

5-5.2. ' Possession 56 

5.3-5.19. Monosyllabic nouns 57 

5.20-5.113. Compounding 61 

5.22-5.37. Nominal suffixes 62 

5.38-5.70. Nominal prefixes 66 

5.71-5.113. Composition of nouns 71 

5.114. Borrowed nouns 78 

6-6.38. JTHE PRONOUN 80 

6-6.12. Person and number 80 

6.13-6.14. Independent pronouns 82 

6. 15. Possessive pronouns 83 

6. 1 6. Possessive pronominal prefixes 83 

6. 17. Emphatic possessives 84 

6.18-6.18a. Subjective and aoentive pronominal prefixes 84 


(5.19-6.28. Objective pronominal prefixes 85 

0.29-6,32. Other pronominal prefixes 89 

0.33-6.34. Demonstrative pronouns .' 90 

6.35-6.38. Indefinite pronouns 90 

7-7.116. BOUND FORMS 92 

7-7.10. Bound forms initial position 92 

7.1. Demonstratives 92 

7.2. Interrogatives 92 

7.3-7.10. Adverbial elements 93 

7.11-7.103. Postpositions and enclitics ,,«,,, t s s ...... : s s s 95 

7.104-7.116. Compounded© of postpositions and enclitics 115 

8 8.104. THE VERB 119 

s, 7-8.30. Intransitive and transitive 120 

8.31-8.35. Static verbs 127 

8.36-8.81. Active verbs 129 

8.38-8.42. Progressive-continuative system 129 

8.43-8.47. Inceptive system 131 

8.48-8.50. Cessative system 132 

8.51-8.53. Customary 133 

8.54-8.61. Perfective 134 

8.62-8.72. Repetitive system 135 

8.73-8.76. Imperative 137 

8.77-8.81. Optative 137 

8.82-8.84. Interrelationship between tense, aspect, 

system, and mode 138 

8.85-8.91. Phonetic character of vbrb stem 139 

8.92. Augmentative 141 

8.93-8.94. Diminutive 142 

8.95-8.104. Irregular verbs 143 

9-9.23. THE ADJECTIVE 147 

9.4-9.12. Comparison 148 

9.13-9.22. Numerals 150 

9.23. Money 153 

10-10.124. PREFIXES 154 

10.1-10.14. Position of pronomlnal prefixes 154 

10.15-10.20. Objective prefixes 157 

10.21-10.24. aspecnve-inflectional prefixes 158 

10.25-10.26. Inflectional prefixes 159 

10.27-10.34. Pre -paradigmatic prefixes 159 

10.35-10,64. Principles of conjugation 162 

10.47. Glide prefixes 165 

10.48. Retroactive influence 166 

10.49-10.54. Contraction 166 

10.55-10.58. Position of prefixes 168 

10.59-10.64. Voicing 170 

10.65-10.73. Arrangement of paradioms 171 

10.74. List of prefix paradigms 173 

10.75-10.124. Paradigms 177 

1 1 -11.118. SYNTAX 293 

1 1-1 1.25. Position of elements 293 

11.26-11.54. Syntactic elements 300 

11.55-11.86. Negative 307 


11.87-11.100. Interrogatives 315 

11.98-11.100. Interrogative* with "Be" 320 

11.101-11.118. Connectives and clauses 322 

11.104-11.111. Clauses 323 

11.112-11.118. Cause 329 

12-12.60 . USAGE AND VOCABULARY 332 

13.1-12.18. Time and place 332 

12.19. Thus , 336 

12.20-12.27. Number and quantity .- .- ... 337 

12.28-12.60. Verbs ; .. . 339 

12.28-12.43. Type verbs 339 

12.44. Verbs of force and speed' 351 

12. 45-12. 46a. Verbs of animated motion 352 

12.47. . Verbs of doing and making 357 

12.48-12.53. Verbs of being and becoming 361 

12.54-12.60. Verbs of communication 365 

13-13.54. SPEECH DIVERSITY 369 




1. This Navaho Grammar was begun in 1930 as a means to the end 
of investigating Navaho Religion. 1 In a sense the task was an in- 
voluntary undertaking because at the time, and for several years 
after, it seemed that the language could be learned by a practical 
application of available sources, or of papers proposed for immediate 
publication. At that time the late Professor Edward Sapir had 
studied Navaho for some years and had a bevy of students working 
on it, so that Navaho was classed as ' 'a recorded language." For some 
weeks I attended Sapir's class in Navaho at the University of 
Chicago, and there got an outline of his analysis, which was later 
supplemented by conferences at Yale University. 

At the same time I was seeking a basic pattern for the language, 
I was trying to speak it. As time went on, I realized, too slowly, that 
the structural pattern I was struggling with did not have a practical 
application, that is, the forms were too theoretical to be understood 
by the Navaho. This unsatisfactory result was not due to mis- 
pronunciation, for I passed most tests designed to differentiate tone, 
quantity, and the like. The forms simply did not fit the formulas 

I was primarily concerned with ethnological research, so that it 
was not until 1937 that I finally decided to start the language work 
as near the beginning as seemed necessary, especially since by this 
time the publication of the grammar was more remote than in 1930. 
Another circumstance contributed to my decision. Adolph Bitanny 
(AB) was one of my interpreters in 1934 and later, under the in- 
fluence of Professor Hubert Alexander of the Department of Philos- 
ophy, University of New Mexico, had become interested in the 
analysis of Navaho and its relation to philosophy. AB was parti- 
cularly intrigued by the concept of "aspects" and attempted to 
apply it to Navaho. Interestingly enough, he came up with an outline 
of principal parts and prefixes that resembled more closely than 
anything P. E. Goddard's analysis of Hupa and Kato, a but AB's 
was of necessity much extended. In 1937 he came to New York 
where he spent the winter working with me on transcriptions, 
vocabulary, and morphology. To AB then, I owe the foundation of 
this work. We spent hours isolating principal parts and their signifi- 

1 Beichard 1950. 

a Goddard 1910, pp. 112ff.; 1912, pp. 42ff. 


cance, classifying stems, and working on prefixes. AB's contribution 
was so basic that, had events permitted, h§ WOllld have been & collab- 
orator in this work. As it happened, however, he went into the 
Army and slowly the Grammar moved so far beyond his scope that 
he would not understand much of the analysis as it now stands. 

Another effect upon written Navaho goes back indirectly to 
Sapir. Robert Young, a student at the University of New Mexico, 
was also influenced by Alexander (one of Sapir's students) and by 
AB. Later Young was put in charge of Navaho language work for 
the Department of Indian Affairs ; he trained William Morgan (WM), 
and the two collaborated in producing a Navaho grammar and 
dictionary for Navaho and laymen who might want to learn Na- 
vaho. 3 The prefixes of the Young-Morgan book are treated in the 
Sapir manner, but are of great value because full (or nearly full) 
paradigms are given. The principal parts of the verbs are also 
interpreted according to Sapir's principles, but underneath each 
verb many prefix paradigms not included in the grammar are written 
out in full. Furthermore, some of the most commonly used expres- 
sions are listed, and the transcription is almost faultless. Usually, 
therefore, the material could be adjusted to my analysis, and when 
that was impossible, I was able to work with WM, who has by this 
time a remarkable training and facility in Navaho analysis. 

The foregoing explains the reason for this grammar. Actually 
there is no Sapir grammar — it is in the form of various papers on the 
Apachean languages, largely theoretical, published by Hoijer since 
Sapir's death. 4 Since my view of certain basic principles differs 
greatly from Sapir's a section will be devoted to the differences in 
the analysis of the Sapir school and mine (1.7-1.26.). 

1.1. A word is in order to explain why earlier efforts at written 
Navaho are not adequate for learning the language. An Ethnological 
Dictionary of the Navaho Language (1910) and A Vocabulary of the 
Navaho Language (1912) by the Franciscan Fathers, and Dineh 
Bizad by Rev. F. G. Mitchell (1932) are unsatisfactory because tone, 
quantity, and other important phonetic details are not distinguished. 
Trying to read Navaho is therefore a guessing game for those who 
already know it, rather than a means of communication. Father 
Berard Haile who was a motivating force in the Franciscans' work, 
has since published excellent texts in an accepted orthography 
which have been extensively used in my work, both linguistic and 
ethnological. In 1926 Father Berard published A Manual of Navaho 
Grammar, and since 1941 a series of four phrasebooks Learning 
Navaho. I cannot agree with his analyses. 5 

3 Young-Morgan 1943. 

4 Hoijer 1945a, b; 1946a, b; 1948a; 1949. 
s Cp. Hoijer 1961. 

1.2.-1.6. tffT&omjctfiotf ' $ 

1.2. A major lack in all the works mentioned is the fact that the 
verbal prefixes have been treated only cursorily and have hardly 
been translated. The result is the same as if Latin were explained on 
the basis of stems with formal suffixes, none of which were differ- 
entiated by translation. 

Since Navaho is a living language spoken by some 60,000 persons 
two-thirds of whom do not and perhaps never will speak English, 
and since there are cultural reasons why it should be written, various 
attempts have been made to reduce the language to a medium that 
would allow written communication. Anthropologists have been 
able to record many dying Indian languages in phonetic writing 
despite the protests of those untutored in linguistics, and the 
limitations of the English printing press. Navaho, however, has been 
subject to pressure groups of all kinds, most of whom consider that 
"if it cannot be written in English symbols, it may as well not be 
written." A few, however, have realized that linguistic principles not 
found in English prevail in Navaho and must be indicated. Among 
them is Father Berard Haile who has changed his orthography at 
least three times to my knowledge. He now publishes in the last 
revised system employed by Sapir and Hoijer. 

1.3. The Department of Indian Affairs has devised a special 
format for its publications. In the process of simplification several 
symbols were eliminated as unnecessary which, in my opinion, 
vitiate the recording for historical purposes. Most people who can 
read it can read the other systems as well. A great advantage is that 
several groups interested in Navaho have agreed to use it. 

1.4. The system favored by linguists is that devised by Sapir and 
used by Father Berard. It is complicated, including several Greek 
symbols, and symbols for the sibilants which seem arbitrary to the 
layman — as indeed they all do! Actually they follow the Inter- 
national system of phonetic transcription. In his Navaho Phonology, 
Hoijer has made a few capitulations to the Press, which must be 
confusing to one trying to learn Navaho. In short, there is so little 
agreement about writing Navaho that the novice experiences ex- 
treme frustration at the outset, and it is small wonder that he gives 
up trying to learn Navaho almost at the first lesson. 

1.5. Since it is impossible to choose a system which everyone may 
use and read, since it was necessary to be uniform about the 
grammar and contemplated dictionary, and more particularly, since 
I started with the system that was mechanically well worked out on 
the printing press, I have adhered to the system used by American 
linguists before Sapir's last revision. Besides saving time, it has the 
advantage that the symbols of the well-developed sibilant system 

2 Reichard 

4 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 1.5.-1.7. 

are more suggestive than the later system, for instance, ts instead of 
c, j instead of z, etc. I have transcribed all references in this system 
no matter how they were originally written. 

1.6. I have cited many examples from published texts — Sapir, 
Hoijer, Father Berard Haile, Young-Morgan, and I have even 
revised some of Matthews' writing (not used in this work), but I 
have not always adopted the author's interpretation, in fact, I have 
often used his example to illustrate my own point. 

In presenting this grammar, which may seem unduly complicated, 
I have tried to elucidate the principles of the language, principles 
which I myself do not find simple. I have tried to make the grammar 
as complete as possible, though there is scarcely a subject with 
whose analysis I am completely satisfied. Consequently, it cannot 
be expected to be elementary ; it contains too many ideas that are 
not common linguistic knowledge. Nevertheless, I hope it may 
furnish a source from which Navaho forms and idioms may be 

I have tried to keep historical questions and references to a 
minimum, the major purpose being to present the Navaho language. 
However, I have had in mind the need for genetic reconstruction of 
Athabaskan and have tried to include all data that may contribute 
to knowledge of family relationships — my insistence on differentia- 
ting h and x, for example, and my reluctance to reduce y and y to y 

1.7-1.26. The Sapir School of Athabaskan 

1.7. Because of Sapir's influence on Athabaskan studies it is 
necessary to discuss these materials, particularly the points of dis- 
agreement between them and this work. The works are by Sapir 
himself, by Hoijer for Southern Athabaskan, Apache and Navaho, 
and by Li for California (western Athabaskan) and northern Atha- 
baskan (Sarsi and Chipewyan). Some of the major conflicts are due 
to approach. The reports of the Sapir school indicate as a primary 
purpose the reconstruction of primitive Athabaskan; as another, 
the demonstration of the method of what has come to be called 
"structural analysis," purposes which are largely theoretical. The 
interpretation of a particular language as a living, cultural pheno- 
menon seems to be almost incidental. 6 

Most of the criticism of Navaho will of necessity be cited from 
Hoijer's works since it fell to him to publish much of Sapir's work. 
It is impossible to dissociate their contributions. Hoijer seems to 

fl Hoijer 1946a, b, c; 1947, 1948a, b, 1949; Li 1930a, b, 1933; Sapir, see 


have hewe<l conscientiously to Sapir's mark, even though Hoijer 
collected a great deal of the material and presumably made some of 
the analyses. I shall first discuss general points of view as they 
affect Navaho, then more particular details of the language. 

1.8. In my brief papers on Navaho 7 1 have indicated that a major 
failing of the modern linguist is the overemphasis on phonetic- 
phonemic questions, an emphasis in many cases so exaggerated that 
one sometimes gets the idea that language is merely phonemics. 
Affected as he is by this school of procedure, it is not surprising that 
Hoijer's fullest treatment of Navaho is the Phonology. It contains 
some assumptions that have not been fully discussed, or that have 
not been substantiated. Usually these assumptions are of broad 
scope, including all Athabaskan. 

1.9. One is the character of Navaho categories. I have discussed 
this question elsewhere insofar as it applies to ethnology, 8 but my 
conclusions apply to some aspects of the language as well (8.82- 
8.84.). They indicate that for one purpose or another Navaho culture 
is divided into categories most elements of which have some features 
in common, but in order to make a category "complete" in the 
Navaho sense, it should contain at least one feature of an opposed 
or related category. In other words, categories are inclusive rather 
than exclusive. If there are only two subdivisions each may be 
represented in the "opposite" class. This circumstance is illustrated 
by the bipolarity of many Navaho elements. For instance, if a 
postposition means "to, toward..," it may also mean "away 
from. . . ," if a stem means "buy," it may also mean "sell" — it may, 
of course, be more accurately translated as "exchange." Similarly, 
a stem means either "win" or "lose at gambling," one for which 
there is no single English equivalent. To be sure, the form of the 
verb may indicate which of two opposed meanings is to be chosen ; 
often only the context makes it clear. 

The character of classification may be a reason for the marked 
diversity of the Navaho language. The willingness to include details 
which to us are irrelevant may be a major cause for the Navaho's 
extreme tolerance of several patterns and ultimately for the out- 
standing adaptive nature of the culture. 

1.10. Since the type of classification is distinctive, it is advisable 
to omit the words "always," "never," "all," and "only" in dis- 
cussions of Navaho, because thought may usually be adapted to the 
tolerated exigencies of a situation. Perhaps then it would be more 
accurate to suggest solutions for Navaho problems, rather than to 

7 Reichard 1948, p. 15; 1950a, p. 194. 
* Reichard 1950b, pp. 3-12. 


6 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 1.10.-1.12. 

make dogmatic generalizations which may not stand up under 
practical tests. 9 

Similarly, generalized references like "inorganic," "non-functional," 
and the like, should be avoided in view of the present inexactness of 
Athabaskan knowledge. A basic genetic problem is the relation of 
the stem finals g, y, x, and h. Since there is tremendous variation in 
the recording of these sounds in all Athabaskan publications, the 
question is far from settled and we cannot possibly know whether h> 
which is most common in Navaho, is "organic" o " "inorganic." The 
question should be left open so that the student does not accept a 
neat, but possibly incorrect conclusion which prevents him from 
further research on the subject. 10 This criticism may be leveled at 
many reconstructions which, on the basis of Navaho, seem to me to 
be founded on deceptive cognates or false etymologies. 

1.11. 1 cannot agree with the Sapir school in accepting as readily 
as they do the theory of alternants, the principle that several forms 
are interchangeable in meaning. 11 Often it has proved an evasion. 
Usage does not allow doubt ; one can no more compose a form with 
one or another element than a compositor can strike a letter half a 
half i on a linotype machine. Navaho texts prove this contention. It 
is true there are some alternants but, like all overlapping, there are 
limitations which must be discovered. 

1.12. The principle of alternants, together with the lack of 
distinction between prefix and stem meanings, has led to confusion 
in the determination of aspect and mode — some so-called alternant 
forms were generalized, but the result is uncertain, whereas the 
actual principal parts are much simpler, and patterns can be dis- 
cerned through the recognition of all the aspects. The shortcut of 
alternants was accepted not only for verbs, but for other elements 
as well. For example, Hoijer ascribes to alternants, without indicat- 
ing change of function, the forms tcq-' "excrement" and bitca-n "his 
excrement," neglecting to mention bitcq*' "his excrement." 12 One 
explanation of these two forms lies in meaning and usage: tcq m ' 
"excrement" (possessive bitcq-') is an inelegant "household" word, 
but bitca-n "its manure, ordure" may be used as a polite form. And 
not only is there a difference in usage, but there is also a rule that an 
unpossessed noun with form CV has a possessive of form -CV*n to 
signify that it is not a mere possession, but a possessed part in 
relation to a whole (5.13-5.16.). There is therefore a phonetic, 
morphological and semantic differentiation. 

9 Hoijer 1945c, pp. 7, 8, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 24, 27, 28, 30, 34, 40, 
41, 42, 47. 

10 Ibid., p. 39. 

11 Ibid., pp. 32ff; Hoijer 1943, pp. 39-40; 1946c, p. 72; Li 1930a, pp. 53ff; 
1930b, pp. 15ff ; 1933, pp. 126ff. 12 Hoijer 1945c, p. 36. 

1.13-1.15. INTRODUCTION 7 

1.13. As the discussion of prefix and verb stem and the inter- 
pretation of their combination as aspects implies, much more can be 
done than has so far been accomplished by insisting on a more rigid 
analysis of morphology through the investigation of meaning. The 
formulas of the Sapir outline often attempt to explain several 
prefixes as if they were one. This result may seem to be due to 
insufficient data. Since Sapir and Hoijer had a large mass of 
materials, such a conclusion is false. The effect is due rather to the 
extreme difficulty we all encounter in holding Navaho informants 
to paradigmatic forms of the same series. The language is rich in 
forms and many have meanings so similar as to seem the same in 
English, so that informants mix paradigms and give a single mean- 
ing for the distinctive forms. The Young-Morgan grammar some- 
times suffers from the same affliction. 

There is, to be sure, a great deal of overlapping, but there is also 
some distinction, usually phonetic, which shows the independence 
of many elements, especially of prefixes. If these distinctions are 
isolated, there remain relatively few morphological irregularities. 
This result is contrary to former analyses in which forms have so 
often been described as "irregular" that the student gets the idea 
they are more common than regular forms. 13 It is hoped that this 
grammar will show that, though the patterns are somewhat unusual, 
the language is quite regular once the linguistic scheme is realized. 

1.14. Sapir's interest in "pattern phenomena" is well known, and 
I have always wondered why he and his students failed to apply this 
useful theory very extensively. They worked out some of the 
elementary assimilations and contractions, but failed to push them 
to the obvious conclusions dictated by the pattern. 14 It seems to 
me that one of the lessons pattern has to teach is that once it be- 
comes established, in language as in other cultural phenomena, it is 
often carried far beyond what may seem to be "reasonable" limits. 
If therefore this happens in a language, we may properly extend the 
analysis as far as the language allows. I may be accused of having 
expected too much of the rules I have found, on contraction, for 
example. I feel justified by the results for which I think there is 

1.15. The limitations so far discussed apply to the study of 
Athabaskan. Let us now examine some more specific details of 
Hoijer's analysis with which I am forced to disagree. One reason 
another Navaho grammar seems appropriate is the peculiarity of 
the examples cited, although, to be sure, neither Sapir nor Hoijer 

13 Ibid., p. 50; 1938a, p. 89, n. 1 :22. 

14 Li utilized the concepts more than anyone, but even he stopped long 
before realizing the suggested possibilities (cp. Sapir, 1925, p. 194). 

8 NAVAHO GBAMMAR l-lfe.-l.18. 

has attempted to aid a speaker of commonplace Navaho. For in- 
stance, they give many examples derived from the stems for "go." 
These stems are distinctive for singular, dual, and plural — this is 
in itself a curious adaptation for the English speaker to make. And 
in addition, the singular stem is one of the very few Navaho stems 
that change consonant initials in an "irregular" manner. Formally 
therefore the treatment of "go" is atypical. Morphologically too the 
stems for "go" may seem strange. Although to the English speaker 
"go" is an intransitive verb, in Navaho it may be treated as a 
transitive with forms in the active and passive voices. This possi- 
bility, though by no means uncommon in Navaho, makes the verbs 
for "go" additionally difficult to the novice. 

1.16. From the semantic viewpoint the stems for "go" are 
extremely important because with various prefixes and in com- 
bination with other elements they determine many fundamental 
idioms. The criticism here is, not that "go" should not be treated, 
but rather that it is a single exception which has been used to 
illustrate a type. 

1.17. Another example constantly cited by Hoijer is regular, but 
it has become so generalized in meaning and so extended in form 
that it is far from typical of the class of verbs it is used to illustrate. 
This is the stem ~&l "round, convenient object moves." 15 It is the 
most generalized of all the stems in the class called the "type stem" 
(abbreviated T), and therefore only rarely demonstrates what 
purports to be its primary or essential meaning. It is a great tempta- 
tion to use this stem as a type form, one to which I myself some- 
times yield, yet it should be understood that this stem is funda- 
mental in contributing many idioms, and that consequently modi- 
fications of the rules may be encountered. The stem -a*l also 
illustrates a point previously mentioned, namely, it is a stem which 
has alternant forms in all principal parts save the progressive. This 
fact makes it confusing to the novice, and "atypical" of the verb 
class which must be understood from the very first. Therefore other 
stems from the list of type stems often illustrate the prefix com- 
binations and the usage more simply and clearly. 

1.18. The assumption of "inherent tone" seems to me not to be 
validated by the behavior of Navaho elements, particularly the 
prefixes. This assumption implies that some "syllables" are essenti- 
ally low, others high, and some neutral. 16 1 do not know of evidence 
to support the assumption. We ought to know, for instance, why 

16 Unless otherwise noted the progressive stem is cited as basic in the 
discussion of the verb. 
16 Hoijer 1938a, p. 74; 1943, p. 39; 1945c, pp. 50, 56, 68; Sapir 1925. 

1.18.wl.21. INTRODUCTION 9 

there are radical differences in tone structure of Navaho and Sarsi, 
and why tone in Chipewyan is often just the opposite of that in 
Navaho. Since Sarsi and Chipewyan are the only two major 
northern Athabaskan languages for which pitch has been worked 
out — -and I for one look to the north or northwest as the place of 
origin of grammatical pitch — it seems premature to rely on a 
principle so insubstantial. These remarks do not mean that rela- 
tionships should not be examined and proposed; they merely warn 
against final acceptance with the resulting cessation of inquiry. 

1.19. The problem of inherent tone is one with the definition of 
the syllable. I operate with the concept that the Navaho prefix 
syllable is of the form Ca-, Ci-, or Co-, and the basic stem syllable 
-CVC. The tone of these basic syllables is assumed to be neutral (not 
differentiated in writing from low). Any variation of these simple 
vowel forms — e, some o's, lengthened vowels, any tone except 
neutral, nasalization — are due to contractions, many of which have 
been ascertained, more of which may be discovered by comparative 
analysis. The reduction of the syllable to such simple forms has led 
to the isolation of many prefixes. It may even explain such stem 
forms as -CVC progressive or present, in contradistinction to -CV'C 
inceptive, or -CV*' perfective. It is possible too that the final con- 
sonant of the stem syllable of form -CVC may prove to be a stem 
contracted with a tense or aspective suffix. 

1.20. The acceptance of CV as a syllabic form establishes the ideal 
that if a form differs in any respect from CV it needs explanation, 
and that the elements composing it may be susceptible of meaning. 
Questions arising are: Why is a, i, or o long ? Why is there no vowel 
at all ? Why is the vowel high ? Nasalized ? High and long ? High, 
nasalized and long ? Why is the vowel e or e, or any of their 
lengthened or high-toned variants ? Why is n syllabic ? Is it equi- 
valent to na- or ni- ? Why do we find -Vn instead of -y- ? Many of 
these questions and others are answered in the chapter on Prefixes 
(10-10.124.); it is essentially a chapter on phonetic processes. 

1.21. In relation to "inherent tone" some vowels combine with 
others in a way entirely different from others with the same forms. 
Compare, for example, 'a-beyond and 'a-indefinite pronoun (10.76b, 
10.103.). What is inherent in 'a-beyond that makes it combine with 
yi-continuative to become 'r-, whereas J a-indefinite pronoun ab- 
sorbs 2/z-continuative with hardly a trace ? Or is the inherent tone of 
?yi-continuative the reason for the difference ? Is di-start from 
completely equivalent to di-emit ? Are they distinct by origin, or 
have they become so by development ? Is di-start from related to 
d£-start from against, or is the tone inherent ? If the latter ? when 

10 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 1- 2 1.-1.24. 

and where was it inherent ? In Navaho ? In primitive Athab as k an ? 
In a language transitional between the two ? 

1.22. In connection with these and other related questions Hoijer 
posits a theory that the vowel of certain high-toned syllables 
assimilates to a preceding high-toned prefix (syllable). 17 This rule is 
not thoroughly substantiated because the effect occurs in only a few 
restricted circumstances — in the continuative and perfective 
aspects and, more important to note perhaps, only in the singular 
and dual forms, not in the plural. Hoijer does not tell us which 
prefixes require this form of assimilation nor does he mention the 
fact that the effect is variable. An attempt to test the rule gave rise 
to the determination of the "inflective prefix," an element affecting 
tone, and explaining the compounding of several prefixes in the 
perfective as well as in the continuative forms. The rules for the use 
of the inflective prefix have few exceptions, although some meanings 
still remain doubtful, and the ultimate reason for the inflective 
prefix is undetermined (cp. 10.25-10.26.). 

1.23. The isolation of the inflective prefix, which immediately 
precedes the pronominal prefix of the verb complex invalidates 
Hoijer's place numbering of prefixes. 18 Moreover, he disregards the 
difference in position of the subjective and agentive pronouns, an 
omission that changes the place number of the pronouns and leads 
him to a different pronominal system for the continuative and 
perfective. These omissions are major shortcomings, for place has no 
meaning if only one element is in error. Still another point of dis- 
agreement is that, if place numbers are to be used satisfactorily, 
they should be from right to left, instead of the reverse, counting 
backward from the stem. The stem is always ascertainable and the 
three prefixes immediately preceding are essential, whereas any or 
all the prefixes Hoijer has in places 1-9 may be lacking. 

1.24. A matter of determining phonemes seems to me of great 
importance. When a language has as many similar forms with 
distinctive functions as Navaho, how can the phonemicist do it 
justice, and at what point in the course of his study may he trust his 
judgment that two (or more) sounds may be safely reduced to a 
single phoneme? The answer to the question is difficult, but a 
warning may be sounded to the effect that a premature deter- 
mination of the character of sounds and particularly of their 
functions, may obscure or eliminate a morphological process. 

17 Hoijer 1943, pp. 39-41 ; 1945c, pp. 30-1. In the work last cited in note 13 
Sapir asks similar questions, but I know of no place where he answered them 
except by assumption. 

18 Hoijer 1946a, p. 1. 

1 ;24.-1.26. introduction 11 

An exa/mide from "Na.vnTin illnflf.rfl.+.Afl this point. The definition of 
the voiceless stops t and k includes a discussion of aspiration, which 
in my opinion is of historical significance. I agree with Hoijer in 
omitting from writing the secondary phases of the pronunciation of 
t and k and related sounds — aspiration, palatalization, labializa- 
tion. In considering t and tx as alternants, however, the morpho- 
logical function of x has been overlooked, x in some cases and its 
voiced counterpart y constitute a phoneme that forms a consonant 
cluster with a whole series of sounds, unrelated in certain respects: 
tx, sx 9 zy> dzy, t$x y ex, tcx, Ix (cp. 8.92.). The clustering of x or y with 
a consonant initial is a true infixing process, and denotes an 
augmentative or pejorative. Hoijer gives an inkling of this process in 
the statements: u t8 is not as strongly aspirated as the phonemes t 
and k, and is never followed by an #-glide." But to this a note is 
affixed: ' 'There is one exception to this rule: if a word containing ts 
is pronounced very emphatically, as in a command or exhortation, 
the ts phoneme may be followed by an #-glide." 19 Since the aug- 
mentative function of x was disposed of for phonemic expediency, 
the texts, for the most part, lack words that indicate the augment- 
ative or pejorative. 

1.25. Hoijer mentions a rule to the effect that a stem of the form 
-Ct' may take the form -CVnV when a suffix of the form -P is 
added. 20 He fails to show, however, that there are bisyllabic stems 
of the form -CVnV or -CVCt which are diminuatives (8.93.). 
Almost certainly such stems became crystallized by an historical 
process different from that now recognizable as suffixation, or at 
least by a process that had a distinctive result. 

1.26. If the student be irked by the extreme stress on small 
details in the analysis of Navaho, he must realize that such emphasis 
is functional, and more particularly, that the details define pro- 
cesses and significance that now often seem unique, but may doubt- 
less be found in other languages once attention is directed to them. 21 

The major question is not only what forms exist, but also where 
the lines are drawn within a single category of form — what is 
mechanical, what is morphological, and what is historical or genetic. 
Meaning seems to be the key that can open these doors. Not 
etymology, semantics, phonetics, phonemics, or morphology alone, 
but all in their fascinatingly intricate association. 

19 Hoijer 1945a, p. 12. 

20 Ibid., p. 34. 


Cp. Reichard 1938, pp. 553-9. 


2. The grammatical processes by means of which Navaho words 
are modified are: affixing, including prefixing, suffixing, and in one 
case, infixing; of these prefixing is most common. The affix frame, 
that is, prefix with suffix is also a common syntactic device. 
Phonetic changes, particularly those caused by contraction (sandhi) 
are of great importance in morphology. They include change of 
consonant by assimilation and juxtaposition, change of vowel with 
various combinations of vowel quality, quantity, and tone, and even 
change from consonant to vowel, indicated by change of tone. Still 
another phonetic change with morphological significance is voicing. 

Although position is relatively free in some respects, it is never- 
theless an important device, particularly in indicating the relation of 
pronouns, verbs, and postpositions. 

3-3.140. PHONOLOGY 

3. For various reasons some of Hoijer's work must be repeated 

here: His recording differs from that in this work. It is essential to 
present the system here used. Some qualifications will be stipulated, 
some modifications and additions will be made to the discussion of 
phonology. Hoijer's analysis has been adopted to a large extent 
although some differences are noted because of interpretation. 1 

3.1-3.7. Vowels 

3.1. The Navaho vowels are the following: 

Low-central unrounded a as in English odd 

Mid -front unrounded e as in English met 

High-front unrounded i as in English bit 

Mid=back rounded o as in French mot 

All vowels have continental rather than English values, that is, 
they are pure vowels, and when primary, they are very short. The 
vowel a is so short that it is often heard as the obscure vowel of 
English "about, above;" the variation is non-phonemic. Although 
a, e, and i are near the English equivalents if not diphthongized, o 
varies considerably. It is between o and u as in English "look" and 
is often heard as u ; this variation is not phonemic. 

3.2. The vowels may be lengthened, but lengthening does not 
cause diphthongization. Quantity is very important in Navaho 
because it has morphological significance. The symbol - indicates 
length, so that one type of vowel modification is: a*, e*, r, o\ 

Vowels may have any of three quantitative values, short, half- 
long, and long. Of these short and long are phonemic. The long 
vowels or vowel clusters are only half-long before some voiceless 
consonants, particularly h 9 x, s, c, I. Length is important because it 
indicates contraction, but it is often difficult to differentitate half 
long from short vowels in this position. 

3.3. Lengthening a vowel may be a means of securing emphasis: 
'&din 'd'din 'ddvn "there was none, none, none;" 'ani'dr 7 (< 'anidi- 
i-') "very fresh (tracks)" (NT 132:1). Such lengthening occurs 

1 Hoijer 1945c. 


14 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.^.-3.6. 

particularly before the final glottal stop of a word. The glottal stop 
varies in strength; it may be very weak, but when used for emphasis 
after a lengthened vowel, it is articulated with a deliberate release 
which sounds much like the exaggeration unconsciously achieved by 
speakers first learning to pronounce the glottal stops. The word for 
"Let it alone!" is no-we' ; it may be used to a child the first time it is 
admonished. If, however, the child persists in investigating a for- 
bidden object, the adult may say, no'wt^ with an exaggerated 
lengthening of the second vowel and a release of the glottal stop 
which is truly a "catch." 

A conventional ending of a prayer is the phrase, xqj$ ndxdsdlf'' 
"it has become beautiful again." Prayers are generally repeated 
perfunctorily with considerable elision and speed, although all words 
must be articulated. The first three times the phrase sounds as it has 
been written, but the last time, it is x$j§ ndx&sdU" 9 with the 
exaggerated release of the glottal stop. 

3.4. All four vowels may be nasalized; they resemble French 
nasalized vowels. Nasalization is indicated by a cedilla under the 
letter: q, % y i, p. The nasalized vowels may be long: qr, g", |-, g\ 

Navaho has pitch instead of stress accent; consequently every 
vowel must be thought of in terms of tone. When no accent is used, 
the vowel has a neutral tone, that is, the tone is selected arbitrarily. 
If two unmarked vowels occur in succession both should be pro- 
nounced without change of pitch. The significance of pitch is the 
relationship of one tone to another. Consequently a high tone, 
indicated by an acute accent over the vowel — a, e, i, o— signifies 
that the tone is high in relation to the speaker's chosen neutral (low) 
level. Vowels may be long and high; a-, i\ v t 6', and they may be 
long, nasalized and high, #\ $•, (', 4'- 

3.5. When tone is grammatically important, as it is in this 
language, change of tone cannot indicate emphasis. Women, how- 
ever, scold or indicate surprise by raising the level of the neutral 
tone, and consequently the relative level of all the others. This 
device is quite as effective on children, husbands, and dogs as the 
elaborate glides in English. 

3.6. When two vowels with differing tone come into contact, they 
may merge into a single vowel which retains the tone of both, as 
di'd- (< di-i'd-), -&-- (< -a-i). The circumflex £ indicates falling tone, 
the inverted circumflex ¥ rising tone. These compound, and there- 
fore secondary, tones are important morphologically — they 
indicate meaning. 

When two vowels come into contact they may contract to one, or 
they may form a "vowel cluster" — Hoijer rightly prefers this term 

3.6.-3.7. PHONOLOGY 15 

to "diphthong." If the tones of the vowels forming the cluster differ, 
they are usually retained in a rising or falling accent, written on the 
first vowel: naydi "one who goes about;" cinai "my older brother." 

Vowels that combine to form vowel clusters are: ai, ao, ei y eo, io f 
oi, qi, qo, gi. Two tendencies compete for vowel combination — the 
tendency for two vowels to combine into one, and the tendency to 
form vowel clusters ; the function of both is therefore in the same 
class as length, changed tone, nasalization. In other words, vowel 
clusters are a result of combination, most commonly of contraction. 2 

My researches have not confirmed the statement that all vowel 
clusters are long. 3 I therefore conclude that the same rules of 
quantity apply to vowel clusters as to single vowels. For instance, 
citcai or citcei means "my grandfather," so called out of respect, not 
necessarily a relative, but citcai', or citcei' "my mother's father," 
and by extension, "my mother's parent, parent's sibling, my 
daughter's child." In prefixes, dai- or dei- "they pi.... it," but 

dard- "we pi ," or "we pi. . . .it." The long vowel cluster may 

indicate that either component is long, or the cluster may be long 
because two short vowels or a short and a long vowel have combined. 

3.7. Syllabic n 

3.7. A vowel, derived from CV, often na- or ni-, which must be 
added to the vowel series, is syllabic n, a sound that has at one time 
consonantal and vocalic values. It should be treated as a vowel in 
the following respects: it takes the place of a vowel; it may be low 
or high. Hoijer considers syllabic n a phoneme and insists that it be 
written with an accent — he uses the grave accent {h) for this 
purpose. 4 Since n is derived from na- as well as ni-, since n- is 
equivalent to na- or ni-, and since na- becomes ni- or n- in certain 
settings and, correspondingly, nd- becomes ni-, syllabic n must be 
treated in relation to its setting. Since syllabic n does not always 
stand for the same thing, it seems reasonable to treat it as we do 
other modified vowels which are not always phonetically equivalent. 
I do not therefore mark the low tone. If n stands in syllabic position 
and has no accent, it is low. 

Two ways in which a vowel may be affected are lacking in the 
treatment of syllabic n. Obviously n is not nasalized, and when it is 
long, it usually retains the vowel, for instance, not -n*- or -w- but 
na-, ne'-, nv-, no*-, na--, ne--, ni*-, or no*-. The contraction of two 
interconsonantal vowels may give rise to -»'-. If so, the resulting 
syllable may involve merely the glottalized n which may be syllabic 
and stands for -ria- or -ni- (cp. 3.41-3.42.). 

2 Hoijer 1943, p. 39. 
* Ibid., p. 30. 
A Ibid. s p. 11. 


navaho grammar 
3.8. Consonants 


3.8. The consonantal system i§ summarized ill the following 
table : 



Spirant s 















































Blade alveolar 



Lateral alveolar 



Glottal stop 






















According to position of articulation the stops are: bilabial b, 
alveolars d, t, t\ palatals g, k, ti, labialized palatal kw, and the glottal 
stop -. The classes of articulation are : the voiceless, lenis, unaspirated 
stops b, d, g; the voiceless, fortis, aspirated stops t, k, kw, and the 
voiceless, fortis, glottalized stops f, ti, and the glottal stop -. 

The two nasal spirants m and n are essentially like those of 
English; m is a rare sound in Navaho, and rd is a result of contrac- 
tion, ri, also a secondary sound due to contraction, is frequently 
found. Because the contractions are a developing phase of Navaho, 
not yet thoroughly crystallized, the glottalized nasals, like $, and, 
in prefix position, t, ri, ti, td, are preceded, rather than followed, by 
the glottal closure, or the two may be combined, for example, 

z and s are alveolar sibilants quite similar to the same sounds in 

The corresponding affricates are: dz voiced, lenis and unaspirated; 
ts voiceless, fortis and aspirated; and U voiceless, fortis, and 

j is a voiced blade alveolar sibilant similar to medial s in English 
"measure;" j may occur in all positions, initial, medial and final. 

c is the voiceless blade alveolar similar to sh in English "ship." 

The blade alveolar affricates are : dj voiced, lenis and unaspirated ; 
tc voiceless, fortis, aspirated; and td voiceless, fortis, glottalized. 

I is a voiced, spirantal alveolar lateral; I is its voiceless counter- 

3 \-3.9. PHONOLOGY 17 

fhe three lateral affricates are: dl, voiced or semi-voiced lateral, 

aC ^imllj7 rf. pmnmmpoH wi+.k 7 roloae©. Sinoo d is unaspftated ill 

Navaho, its manner of articulation affects I. The corresponding 
voiceless lateral affricate is tl, pronounced t with I release ; ti is the 
glottalized form of tl. 

y is an unrounded prepalatal semi-vowel pronounced with enough 
friction to produce in some settings confusion with y; both are 
nevertheless phonemes. y, an unusual sound due to contraction, is 
pronounced with the stop slightly preceding y. 

Hoijer has y as a stem-initial before a and o only. 5 My vocabulary 
yields -ye as well as -ye "marry;" -ye-l and -ybl "move ropelike 
obj.;" -yil and -yil "push." Hoijer also states, "Neither sound 
(y or y) has any noticeable variants." 6 My prefix analysis and the 
texts indicate that y and y are sometimes as difficult to distinguish 
as x and h. Morgan often reduces y to y. He evidently considers 
them equivalent in certain forms where I find them distinguished 
phonetically and morphologically. This is an example of the y- 
problem pointed out in 1.6. Morgan would hardly distinguish the 
stems I mention above. 

y is a voiced back palatal spirant with a labial tinge, sometimes 
quite strong before o ; it is fronted before e and i, before e sometimes 
so exaggerated as to sound yy. Labialized yw may lose its y character 
almost entirely to become w preceded by a slight spirantal attack : 
'awe*' or J aywe* J "baby;" ywalya\ or uwlya' "jail;" biyo tJ or biwo* 9 
"his tooth." 

Hoijer and I have discussed x and h, 7 arriving at different con- 
clusions. I think x is best regarded as an initial phoneme, h as a 
final: xa-out, xastvn "man;" daA-forth; -o^-second person dual 
pronoun. Navaho interpreters do not consider these two sounds 
interchangeable and morphology seems to confirm theft protests 
against a single phoneme. However, this is a problem of overlapping, 
and we shall doubtless never have the material to come to an agree- 
ment about its significance. 

x is the voiceless spirant of y. When y or x precedes o, it is 
pronounced ywo- or xwo — w is written only if y is not pronounced. 
yw and xw before a, e, and i, however, are written because the 
resulting form is due to contraction, o survives in w. 

3.9-3.14. Glottalizatton 

3.9. Certain phases of the sound system have been rearranged to 
bring out values deriving from different viewpoints, and to explain 
why the system cannot be strictly phonemic. Overlapping is very 

5 Ibid., p. 57. 
* Ibid., p. 15. 
7 Ibid., pp. 15ff.; Reichard 1948. 

18 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.9.-3.14. 

impressive in Navaho — there is scarcely a sound which i^ ex _ 
clusively this or that, in certain settings it may be both this an( j 
that. Is such a sound then a single phoneme or several ? 

3.10. The glottal stop is a case in point : It is a sound in it^ own 
right: VeVA "west;" 'i'i^a "sun has set/' 

3.11. When the sounds t\ U, U, td, tt are defined, glottalization 
refers to the manner of artipulation ; it is simultaneous or near- 
simultaneous with the closure of the sound of which it is a part. 
Incidentally, these sounds vary greatly from speaker to speaker. 
Some have a very strong glottal enunciation, others glottalize the 
sounds so weakly that the glottalized sound can only with difficulty 
be differentiated from the unaspirated sonant. These glottalized 
consonants belong in a group of sounds unaffected by preceding -d- 
(cp. 3.55ff.). 

3.12. The sounds rd, ri, and y are preceded, rather than followed 
by the glottal release. This effect may be due to the character of m, 
n, and y, or it may be a reflection of the setting in which they occur, 
in other words of their function: -d-m > -rd-, -d-n > -»'-, and -d~y- > 
-y-, the first and last being rare, -d-n > -ri- being quite common. 

3.13. The sounds ri and y as initials are not confined to stem 
syllables, as is rd, but belong to a larger class of glottalized sounds 
occurring as the result of contraction differing from that of 3.12. If 
the prefixes of type Ca- and 'a-, or Ci- and 'a-, or Ci- and 'i- occur in 
juxtaposition, as they often do, and there is some prefix, such as di-, 
ni-, or yi~ between them and the stem, they may contract with the 
following consonant to form either -'C- or 'C-. There is much dis- 
cussion among Navaho thinkers as to which is correct. As in other 
cases of overlapping, both forms are so frequent that both deserve 
consideration. Prefix initial consonants affected by preceding -a-a- 
or -i-i- are d (> 'd or t), n (> 'n or ri), s (> '«$), dz- (> ti or 9 tS), dj 
(> td or 'td), y (> "y or y), x (> '#). In prefix combination with -a'a- 
j becomes -fC (cp. 3.41.). 

Certain inconsistencies have been tolerated to avoid undue com- 
plication. For instance, it would be convenient to have -ri- stand for 
-d-n- as a stem complex initial, and y n for -a'a-w, but both are 
written -ri-. '£, J £i, and Hd have been retained to indicate -a-'a- plus 
d, dz, and dj, respectively. On the other hand, t, ti, and td have not 
been altered to indicate d- > f, d-ts> ts, or d-td> td. The position of 
the sound indicates its type, 

3.14. When stems are paired in "light" and "heavy" syllables, the 
glottal stop ends the heavy syllable compared with -h of the light 
one: -tah "among," -ta? "between;" -tah (prog.), -/a' (pf.) "be in 

5.15.-3.19. phonology 19 

3.16-3.19. Aspiration and non-aspiration 

3.15. The matter of aspiration is as complex as that of glot- 
talization ; the pronunciation of the aspirates is not as definite as 
that of the glottal stop. The consonant h varies from a long and 
emphatically articulated spirant to an almost imperceptible breath. 
I have noted elsewhere that x after a consonant t or k may be so 
emphasized that the features defining them as stops are lost in favor 
of the spirant x which remains — tadidvn > txddidvn > xadidi'n. % 
The strength or weakness of h or x depends upon the speaker's 
habits, as the Navaho recognizes when he talks about "x-speakers;" 
AB and FH belong with these; WM does not. 

The character of h as related to x is important in many respects, 
but particularly in determining historical relationships : 

x- is preferable to h as an initial 
-h is preferable to x as a final 

Consonants are aspirated, by some speakers very weakly, by 
others so strongly as to form consonant clusters — tx, kx, tsx, tcx — 
the second consonant of which seems to have no function. 

3.16. The voiceless stops t and k differ according to the vowels that 
follow them. Before a, the aspiration tends to be notable, but not 
exaggerated; before e and i, the aspiration is detectable, but the stop 
sounds as if palatalized along with the aspiration, the full forms 
might be indicated as ihye, thi, or khye t khi. The vowels have the 
same effects on the spirants y and x. 

3.17. The sounds t, k t y, and x, as well as U before o take on a 
cluster character of the type txwo y kxwo, ywo, Kwo* The sounds t, k, y, 
and x are written without aspirate or labial symbols, it being under- 
stood that the rules of aspiration and labialization function reg- 

3.18. A cluster is formed by combining several sounds — tx, sx, 
tsx, tcx, lx y zy> and dzy — most frequently surds, followed by x. In 
cases of this kind the strong aspiration is a morphological element 
expressing an augmentative or pejorative (8.92,). In this work when 
x is written after a consonant it indicates the consonant cluster, that 
is, the augmentative form. 

3.19. It is interesting and perhaps significant that the voiced 
stops are not aspirated, in contrast with their paired surds, which 
are often somewhat, frequently strongly, aspirated. The sonants 

8 Reichard 1945, p. 162. 

3 Keicbard 

20 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.19.-3.22. 

have the usual distinction of unaspirated consonants ; their brevity 
and lack of aspiration sometimes cause English speakers to hear b 
as p, d as t, g as k, dz as ts, and dj as tc. It may be helpful to note that 
b is not common in the language and that neither aspirated p nor 
any other form of p occurs ; aspirated d and g are lacking. 

3.20-3.21. Labialization 

3.20. The infrequency of the bilabials 6, m and rri has been noted, 
as has the occurrence of w for yw. Hoijer lists w as a phoneme, 
unrelated to yw, and yw a variant of y before o. 9 w is also found in 
borrowed words — wdxindo-n "Washington, the U.S. Government" 
—but, like the other labias, w is not often found. 

We have already seen that labialization is related to aspiration; 
aspirated sounds retain their character while anticipating by lip 
rounding a following o. Since this is true for t and all palatals 
preceding o, they need not be written with w. 

On the other hand kw, and xw are retained because they appear 
before e and i. They may often be contractions of the type Owe 
< Co-a-i or Cwi < Co-i. Probably they are all contracted forms, but 
so far the elements of such stems as kwv and kwe'e have not yet 
been convincingly established, yw is probably a contracted form 
which in Navaho is sometimes further contracted to w. Neither 
sound occurs often enough to corroborate a theory. 

3.21. The processes, nasalization, glottalization, aspiration, and 
labialization are related to various parts of the phonetic system. To 
understand them it is necessary to cut across the system from 
bilabial stops to glottalized lateral af fricatives, and to consider the 
relationship between consonants and vowels. 

3.22-3.25. Assimilation 

3.22. Assimilation is one of the fundamental processes in the 
study of Navaho. It is closely related to contraction; both are 
carried so far that I omit the term "sandhi." Hoijer has based his 
phonetic-phonemic analysis upon a subdivision of stems, prefixes 
("prefinals," he calls them), and suffixes. For this reason he has in 
some cases failed to arrive at some generalizations that apply at 
least to prefixes and stems, others that apply to all three parts of the 
verbal complex. For example, the interrelationship between vowels, 
consonants, and vowels and consonants is fundamentally similar. 
Differences encountered have to do with the absence of some sounds 

9 Hoijer 1945c, p. 18. 

3.22.-3.25. PHONOLOGY 21 

in certain positions, or with their frequency. In other words, dif- 
fered oas are a matter of probability rather than of essential phonetic 
makeup. 10 

3.23. To illustrate, the d-agentive classifier affects the stem initial 
in the same way as -d- of -vd- first person dual pronoun. Both of 
these d's affect the stem initial y in different ways: If the first 
person dual form is yvdzol (prog.) "we are blowing," we may 
conclude that the zero stem is -yol related to -sol (< -l-zol) and 
-l-zol, rather than to -yol which might be related to ~^ol (non- 
existent), or to -yol with affiliations with -dol (not found). Again, 
yidzil "we 2 are pushing prog." would suggest seeking other forms 
of the verb complex in -yil (zero), -dzil (-d-form), -ail (-Worm), and 
-l-zil (-Z-form), rather than as -yil (zero-form), -dil ( d-form), -l-xil 
(-Worm), or -l-yil (-Z-form). As a matter of fact, the first series 
appears, the second has -gil as the -d-form. 

3.24. Several processes of contraction are closely related to 
assimilation, since the dichotomy between vowels and consonants 
is not always preserved. These processes have been called "absorp- 
tion" and "saturation." Absorption refers to the combination of two 
or more prefixes of similar pattern with resulting form like one or 
the other, or both, if they happen to be exactly alike to begin with. 
For example, yi-3-3 continuative < yi-3 object-^i-continuative; or 
ni-2 continuative < i/i-continuative-m-2 subject. 

3.25. A prefix is said to be "saturated" when it can absorb no 
other prefix without change — of length, tone, vowel, consonant, or 
position. For example, rfo*-3 future < d^-future- ^-progressive; but 
yido--3-3 future < yi-3 object-di-future-i/i-progressive. do*-, though 
very stable, cannot absorb any more prefixes and, when others are 
involved, some change must be evident in the result. Other ex- 
amples are: diyo*-3 repetitive aspect future < dt-future-^/i-pro- 
gressive-^-repetitive aspect; ditfo'-S-i future repetitive aspect < di- 
future-'a-indefinite object-^-progressive-^/i-repetitive aspect. The 
last example shows a change of position of 'a-indefinite object, 
which in the simple future precedes do*- as 'adcr-3-i future. The 
change in position indicates a closer relationship between 'a-indef- 
inite pronoun and -yi-repetitive aspect than between 'a- and di-. 

10 It would be satisfactory to ascertain the reasons for the numerical 
dominance of n- f y-, and d- prefixes, for example, as compared with other 
sounds which might have been used. And we cannot help wondering why so 
few vowels — a, i, and o — are basic in the prefixes, causing such extensive 
overlapping. A plausible reason, of course is that the processes of nasalization, 
lengthening, tone change, vowel change due to combination, glottalization 
with its attendant effects on vowels and consonants, all substitute for such 
variation in vowel development as occurs in Indo-European and other 


22 NAVAHO GBAMMAIt 3.25.-3.29. 

The principles of absorption and saturation will be used in this 
analysis of assimilation as they apply to single sounds ; they will be 
more fully demonstrated in the section on Prefixes which is essenti- 
ally phonetic (10-10.124.). 

3.26-3.33. Assimilation Due to Mechanical Change 

3.26. Changes are called "mechanioal" when they have no morpho- 
logical or semantic significance. 

If an unnasalized vowel precedes a nasalized vowel, the former 
may become nasalized (-V-CY > YCV) : 

8<£§ (< 8i'4) round object is, lies 

x$$ (< xo-n-j$) it is agreeable, satisfactory, beautiful 

x$l§ (< xo-n-lg) there is, there are, it is available 

Some speakers carry this process back to two or three syllables 
preceding the stem ; others do not use it extensively. I have never 
heard the Navaho mention "n-speakers" as they do "^-speakers. 
They should, for differences in the use of nasalization are marks of 
speech diversity. Other recorders have unfortunately omitted the 
distinctions, probably because of a premature reduction of Y and V 
to a single phoneme. Some indication of the differences comes out in 
texts, for instance, -djV or -dj{' "to a point;" -ni\ -n% J "mind;" 
-ni't 9 -nyl "say to, tell;" fa- 'altso, id' "altsq "all" (cp. 12.57.). 

3.27. AB had a notion that a vowel following a nasal consonant 
must be nasalized and high in tone ; he therefore refused to indicate 
the nasalization of vowels such as q, in cimd, camd "my mother." 
Hoijer, Young and Morgan follow AB'& practice, though they give 
no reason. The rule is not borne out by -mas (prog.), -mqs (pres.), 
-mq,*8 (inc.), -mq,'z (pf.), principal parts of the stem "spherical object 
moves;" ma'v, mq,'i' "coyote," and other stems. 

3.28. The example sq'4 "there is a round object" illustrates 
another common assimilation — of * to a — from sVq, which al- 
though written by Young and Morgan, I have never heard spoken. 

3.29. The effect of one vowel upon another in adjacent syllables 
is progressive or retrogressive ; any vowel may be so affected : 

bayan (< bi-yan) his home 

boxo*yan, b6*oyan (< bi-xo-yan) where his house, home is 
cittctfr (< cika'fr) my arrow that very one (NT 238;21) u 
ni da'dc (<C daHc) is it a fact ? is it truly ? 

11 See p. x for abbreviations of text references. 

3.29.-3.32. phonology 23 

be^eldv (< be^aldg^) gun 

ce* 'idin (< ce* *ddin) I have none; with-me there-is-none 

cij&i (<C cij&i) my father 

HH-rii'l < 'cfi-rli'l) we 2 are moving some objects beyond 

J o*0'lmi'l (< 'a'o-hni-l) you 2 are moving some objects beyond 

#&• do- 'ddinini (< rti- do- "6din\-i) don't say that (NT 136:23) 

noxofcd*', naaafcd*' (< nao;ofcd*') earth, on the earth (NT 238: 13) 

3.30. A phase of the same rule, which may be important in genetic 
reconstruction, is the tendency of -i to be affected by following J a- 
and reciprocally to affect it, changing both vowels to a third, inter- 
mediate vowel, e (cp. 5.1.): 

btfeta? (< bVcrfa?) his feather, the feather he uses (cp. bi-ta? "its feather") 
$e'e«dz$*' (< cVasdzfy*) my wife (cp. tfc *&ko 'osdz&nl "all the women") 

(NT 268:14) 
ntfdcdja- 1 , nfiedja-' (< ni'dsdja-') owl (NT 36:25; 46:10) 

3.31. A vowel in the vicinity of a labialized sound may be 

dikwi, ddkwi- how much, how many, a few 

doyoj, diyoj it is botryoidal 

dott$-j, di%$-j it is sour, salty, acidulous 

boyoa (< bi-yos) his shoulder joint 

boyoc (< bi-yoc) its thorn 

xoc ddtsahi- (< ditsahi-) cholla; the-particular-cactus-that-is-needlelike 

do8Q8, disgs it is pink, shiny red, copper color 

3.31a. Initial is may be substituted for 8 : 

sodzil, tsodzil, Mt. Taylor 

sodizin tsodizin prayer 

sq'q na*ydi, tsq'q na-ydi universal harmony (cer.) 

tsedi Sadie 

sindao, tsindao penny 

3.32. The example se'esdzq,'* "my wife" illustrates a common 
reciprocal effect that the two sibilant groups, alveolar and blade 
alveolar, have upon one another, c may assimilate to s, or 8 may 
assimilate to c. Other examples are : 

#i-t8&i (< ci-ts6i) my daughter's child 

si-tsili (< ci-tsili) my younger brother 

dzo-sih(< djosih) he (4) is moving a sharp obj. prog. 

tli-stsoh (< tli-c-tsoh) large snake 

cic6^ (< 8^c6-' > ) I have combed it 

cidjo4 ■(< si-djo-l) bunchy substance is, lies 

yicdjo-l (< yisdjo-l) he has, keeps bunchy substance 

cidja-'* (< ai-dja,'') there is a granular mass 

yicdja^ (< yi&dja-*) he has, keeps granular mass 

cidji-' (< si-dje^) plural obj. are 

tc6t6il, tsdtdil hard oak; rock-plant 

de-cjah (< desjah) it is jagged, curved 

24 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.33.-3.34. 

3.33, The influence of one type of sibilant upon another varies in 
extent : 

cido-sq-l, aido'sq-l he will have my affection; he will love me 

bfrsistogi-, bi'cisfogi- ceremonial arrow 

dziditsxiz (< djiditsxia) he(4) is shaking in a paroxysm 

tsiade'zkt-z {< tsb}d&zk&-z) she(4) began to consider it, she thought it over 

dazdo-Usa-l (< dajdo-ltsa-l) he(4) is going to die (FH) 

t&il tain biya- xaddnisq, vegetation that grows under trees 

'aze-'' t6il bd-xozini- herbalist; one-who-knows-plant-medieine (not y aze- y 

t$il bi-x6*zini' which would mean "medicine fragments, medicine 

broken like pottery") 
'attfyh aodizin protective prayer (cp. fd' do* sits*q,- sinizini [FH] and fd* do* 
cittfyh sinizini [YMG 55] "don't stand in my way") 
8*}'8 lijini' mole; the-wart-that -is -black 

i oainiai*hic (DD), "> aainiai-yic (FH) are you making a mistake? 
nirli'tsd-nic can't you do better than that ? 
tsi de-cjahi Jagged Rocks (place name) 
stfcdjo-l Old Age; old-age-lies-in-a-heap (NT 128:13) 
fd' Hi ' q\t$efyzni'zi*' > (< , dfjci-jni-zi' i ) "that must be the one," she (4) 

thought (EW 90: 17) 

Apparently the reciprocal influence of alveolar on blade alveolar 
sibilants is limited by the attempt to avoid ambiguity, for example, 
} at6a* xo'dzoh "boundary line, danger line, line beyond which one is 
not safe;" but 'altsd 'asdzoh "two lines spread, branch from one 

3.34-3.38. Mechanical Change of Tone 

3.34. Several rules of tonal effect may be called mechanical. A 
short vowel with high tone may be lengthened and its tone changed 
to falling when the syllable is followed by certain other syllables 
with low tone: 'a-demonstrative, "there remote, there near third 
person", xa-interrogative, "what in remote space or time, who, 
which of all possibilities," are examples of bound forms that so 
behave (7.1-7.2.). Many verb stems are in the same category. A 
partial list of elements before which the change occurs is: -r "the 
particular one that;" -r' "after . . .ing;" da m Ui "perhaps, maybe;" 
-di "in place, at; times;" do- future (abbreviation of do-le*l)\ -dah of 
the negative frame do- . . . -dah; ni "for a fact;" ndi "although;" -gi 
"in, in place;" -go subordinating suffix; la J exclamation of surprise, 
finality, conviction; la'na' "desire, wish;" leh "customary," -dji* 
"to a point." Note that the list includes independent words as well 
as bound forms : 

'd-di (< *d-di) in place there remote 

xd-dji* (<xd-dji*) where to remote 

yahH-ydi-' (< yatii*yd-i^) ne*zdd after coming in he sat down (FS 14) 

fd' Higi y dfi*go (< *df6-go) that way, just as that is 

ndnisdzd-djV (< ndnisdzd-dji' ) until I return 

hi'* aizi*ni- (< aizj-i-) his soul; the-particular-one-that-stands within-him 

3.35.-3.38. phonology 2 5 

3.35. The tone of a high long vowel may be changed to falling 
before the same elements ; 

dpdi (< dj- y -di) four times 

d6kwi'cq\ dikwi-cq' (< dikwi-ccf) how many ? how much ? 

J aini-gi (< 'alni-'-gi) at the center 

Compare yah'alni-'gi "at the center inside;" and 'alta' nzvngo 
(< nzfgo) "alternating the}' stood in line" (note that t > -w, in 
addition to the tone and quantity changes). Examples may be 
found with^ alternant forms— either -V-CV > -V-CV, -tf-CV > 
-VCV, or -V-CV, or they may retain the original form. 

3.36. Before certain syllables, however, the s>me kind of vowels 
-V- and -V'- retain their accent. Among them ar6 =e* ' 'concerning, 
custom, way;" -e* 9 future subordination; -r' "after having ..-,;" 
~dah "for example, among others that might be mentioned;" -ni* 
"deceased, past, gone" (cp. ni "for a fact"): 

y ati6'h~e' concerning weaving 

nl6-e- Hail Chant 

xa*ct66-ltihi-dah Talking God among others (BS) 

litci** de-z'&i-nV the late Red Point 

Compare xaya* xayvkd'n-i*' (< xayvkq-v') after taking contained 
substance off (fire). 

3.37. When a syllable with a short high vowel is followed by 
certain syllables with a high vowel, the first may be lengthened. 12 
Elements that may so influence a preceding vowel are: -dfr' "from 
a point toward the speaker; along the way;" -do* "from a point 
away from the actor;" nte\'\ rite-' "past, used to be;" -cf* "doubt, 
probability ;" -dji "side ;" Id "evidently" (pres.) ; lei' "surely, indeed, 
as expected; a certain": 

'd-d^*' (<C 'd-d^-') along from a remote point, from there 
y d*d6- (< *&-d6-) from a remote point off 
'd'dji (K *d-dji) from that (remote) side 
bi&Mi'ki {< bitsili-ki) his younger brothers 
xa?6£i*c{- (< xa > 6£i-c{*) whatever it may be 

3.38. Some long syllables become short when they become pre- 
fixes, or if part of a stem, when another element is added: 13 

£6-* badcfcfdji-nili (< £<5*' ba- dcfcfdji'ni-ll) they (4) just give him things 

expecting no return) (NT 300:7) 
diydhi (< diyd'h-i) he who starts walking 
yidiyo-sfrl (YM 182) {< yi* di^o-sj-l (FH)) she will feed it, force food 

into it 
'ajdjiH (< 'ajdjfr'i) those which someone (4) laid (on it) 
y 4i 'dsa*' bei-ltqji (< be* yidtqji) potdrum tapper 

12 Cp. Hoijer 1945c, pp. 37-8, 

13 Cp. ibid., p. 40, 

26 NAVAHO GEAMMAB 3.38.-3.41. 

bitsV naxaido'lti'l (< nixa* yido-lti-l) he will give us his daughter (in mar- 
riage) (NT 308:17) 
cao'b^ (< ca*yo'b$) I lost at gambling 

The changes discussed in 3.34-3.38. probably depend upon two 
factors, the character of the vowel that takes the change, and that 
of the following vowel. These rules may well be clues to genetic 
relationships, especially in determining tones. So far, however, 
speech and texts are too inconsistent to make any deductions about 
the tonal effects final. 

3.39. Glide Consonants 

3.39. Glide sounds sometimes join stems and suffixes (glide 
syllables affecting conjugations are discussed in 10.47.). The two 
most common glide sounds are -d- and -g- ; their use and the choice 
between -d-> -g-, or occasionally -y- is a phase of lingual diversity: 

-igi- "the one who, that which" has the form -idi* on the western part 

of the Navaho Reservation (5.30.)* 
td-' dkd-d-igi that very one 
'asinfoi'-y-ic are you making a mistake ? (FH) 
'asiniai'-h-ic are you making a mistake ? (DD) 
na'fa-g-i- (< na-fa-i-) birds; the-particular-ones-that-fly-about (NT 


3.40-3.44. Vowel or Consonant Loss 

3.40. A vowel or consonant may be lost: 

fd'l be: na* ntsdxdkcrsn (< tar Id be' nar ntsdxdke's ni) indeed you are 

considered to be in first place for a fact (NT 220:1) 
'(W deilni (< '4- Id) thus truly they spoke (NT 220:23) 
'dkol td- di-nd-ln (< 'dko Id td- di-nd-l ni) even so you (must) go (NT 

'alnd^dna- (< ^atni^ gdna^) around the middle (NT 412:8) 
ba- neise-le (< ba- neise-l le) I keep dreaming about them (NT 234:11) 
di- y sdzdni-gi- (< di- 'asdzdnigi-) these who are women (NT 104:19) 
ddkwi-gdncq' (< d6kwi-go-ine-' > ) I am not sure how many (NT 276:16) 
xtf dtfrgo* 6ncq? (< xa'dte-go-gdne'') I'm not sure that . . . (NT 316:15) 
ni' J (< ni-i-^) yisol after saying ... he blew (NT 42:24) 

3.41. Reference has been made to the effect deriving from a com- 
bination of prefixes of type Ca-'a-CV > Ca'CV or Ca'CV (3.13.). 
Here the process will be treated as a vowel loss with a possible 
globalizing effect on the following consonant, and illustrations will 
be given. 

A number of prefixes — 'a-beyond, da-plural, wa-down, net-about, 
#a-up — may occur before 'a-indefinite pronoun, "some, someone, 

3.41.-3.43. phonology 27 

something.'* If there is no other prefix between the combination 
Ca'a- and the stem complex, the forms remain stable; that is 'a- 
some is a paradigmatic prefix. However, if a prefix of type Ci-, such 
as di-, ni- t yi-, or dji- intervenes, the result is that Ca'a-CV > Ca'CV 
or Ca'OV : da'alyal "they pi. are eating some meat," but da'djilyal or 
da'tdilyal (< da'adjilyal) "they (4) are eating some meat." 

3.42. Consonants occurring in such a position that may be glot- 
talized are the alveolars d and n ; y ; and the sibilant voiced affricates 
dz and dj: y a'fe*cnil (< 'a'ade'cnil) "I shall move some pi. obj. 
beyond;" dariinvl (< da'aninvl) "they are moving some pi. obj. 
beyond;" da'tdo'lyal (< da'adjo'-lyal) "something meatlike has been 
eaten by them (4);" da J t£ztig (< da'adziztig) "they (4) have woven 

In the following example Ca'a- precedes dji- which is contracted 
to -j-, but 1 attaches itself to n: bajnVd (< ba'adjintfq) "he (4) has 
lent round obj. to him" (YM 6). In the next examples d > Rafter -j- : 
'dj'folzin (< 'a- 'adjidolzin) "he (4) maintains himself, his position;" 
y ij'tcrlxoc (< 'ayi- 'adjido'lxoc) "he (4) will go to sleep." 

I have not encountered 'j y though Hoijer has ^dnd^jdvso m l 
(< 'dnd-'adjidrso-l) "he (4) whistled again;" ^add'jnvyf'h (< 'ada- 
'adjiniyf-h) "they (4) are beginning to eat." 14 Actually two prin- 
ciples are in conflict here — the tendency to glottalize dentals, and 
the necessity of preserving the prefix positions. Doubtless the 
conflict has not been settled and there is a choice of forms (cp. NT 
264:7,266:21,268:15,282:17). • 

When the combination Ca'a- occurs before x, following the rule 
of position, the glottal stop precedes x\ in this case no more readily 
glottalized consonant follows: da'xe'sriil (< da'axcsriil) "some pi. 
obj. have been moved by them repeatedly." 

The globalizing process may also apply to Ci'a-: 'andziz bi-'fiyoji 
(< 6r' 'adiyoji) "trachoma; that-which-is-indefinitely-botryoidal- 
in-someone's-eyes;" bi'He'ldld-dv (< &i*' 'ade'dl&'di') "the particular 
one into whom the sun has shone;" xabi'te'Vf' 9 (< xabi'ade'Vi'') "he 
has been caught in the act by someone" (YM 102); xabVUo'ha'd 
(< xabVadzo % ka*d) "he has been slapped with some fabriclike obj.;" 
Hdifje-cnil (< 'axidi'aye-cnil) "I shall repeatedly move some pi. obj. 
beyond repeatedly." 

3.43. As we shall see when considering prefixes, y is very unstable. 
It is often lost after preceding sounds, its loss causing two words to 
become one because neither the noun, postposition, or adverb 
preceding, nor the word beginning with yi- exists in the resulting 
form. Note in the following examples that yi- has different values, 
sometimes being a possessive or objective pronoun, sometimes an 
aspective prefix : 

u Ibid., p. 25. 

28 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.43.-3.47. 

nttiz bd bitidriil (<ibitid yiriil) jewels were taken out (of pouch) for th^ m 

(sheep) (NT 244:21) 
dinii'Ui''' d-j (< dini yiki-'d-j) two men found them (NT 60:3) 
koddittf sizpgo (< kodd- yit&j?) standing facing there (in that direction) 

(NT 298:17) 
koddiUid/jj^ ni^acgo (< kodd'* yikidjj?) the two having come to a stand over 

it (scalp) here; here-from at-a-point-over-it (NT 298:18) 
diniil (< dini yil) with the men (NT 304 : 12) 
xa'qi-l H-yd- Id (< xa y q* yil) over it (ridge) she went with it (baby) 

(NT 36:18) 
yd-dildiltahdgo (< yd'dild yiltahdgo) whatever (surprising) he may be 

talking about (NT 54: 11) 
Uilto'go {<Ui yilto'go) he is only nursed (not fed) (NT 280:25) 
id' dinivji'gd- (< dini yi'ji'gd*) when in future I have called the man by 

name (NT 296:20) 
dibiifi (< dibi yit{) they are rich in sheep (NT 310:8) 
diniic'e-j (< dini yic'i-j) he led men (NT 380:18) 
yiji-yi'jic (< yiji yiyi'jic) he breathed in from it (NT 216:21) 

3.44. The fourth person pronoun dji- is often shortened to -j- 
when preceded by prefixes. In the following it is similarly shortened 
after an independent word : 

do- f Sidajdi-ni-d (< do- 'eida djidi*ni'd) "not that one (of them)," he (4) 
said (NT 216:21) 

3.45-3.133. Sound Changes Due to Morphology 

3.45-3.48. Stem and Stem Complex 

3.45. By far the largest number of sound changes have morpho- 
logical significance and therefore affect meaning. In this section 
changes will be considered that affect single sounds resulting from 
assimilation or contraction, but most contractions of the syllable 
type CV, especially as they affect verbs, will be discussed in the 
section on Prefixes (10-10.124.). The interrelation between vowels 
and consonants, and between prefixes and stems makes any fixed 
subdivision impossible; rules applying to suffixes present similar, 
but perhaps fewer difficulties. 

3.46. In the analysis of all Navaho verbs the stem should be the 
starting point. Many stems have initials that may be changed by 
prefixes that immediately precede them. Some indispensable pre- 
fixes such as the stem classifiers -d-, -l~, and -Z-, and the pronominal 
prefixes -c- "I," -n- "you," -vd- "we 2," -oh- "you 2," so influence 
the stem initial as to change it completely. 

3.47. "Stem" and "stem complex," in contradistinction to "pre- 
fixes," will be differentiated. The classifiers, zero, -d-, -1-, and -l- 
belong to the stem, and by "stem complex" is meant "classifier plus 

3.47.-3.50. phonology 29 

stem." Thus -djol (prog.) "bunchy substance moves" is a "stem" in 
±u© norroirooi <?ense. Ta a more theoretical sense it is a "stem com- 
plex," if it be thu aght of as zero-djol, the classifier being absent and 
therefore called "zero." However, in referring to the stem complex I 
shall mean rather -d-djol (> -djol), -l-djol, or -l-djol. It is apparent 
that one change is -d-djol > -djol, an illustration of the fact that 
hardly a stem can be chosen which is not affected in some form or 
other by rules of assimilation. 

If, for instance, the apparent stem is found in the form yo-djol 
"bunchy substance is moving progressively," or yo'ldjol "he is 
moving bunchy material progressively," it is easy to determine that 
-djol is the stem, and -l-djol the stem complex. If, however, the form 
encountered is yvldjol "we 2 are moving bunchy material pro- 
gressively," it is impossible to know from this form alone whether 
the stem complex is -l-djol "cause bunchy material to move pro- 
gressively," or -l-djol "bunchy material is caused to move pro- 
gressively." The reason is that -d- of yrd-, the first person dual pro- 
gressive prefix, combines with -I- of -l-djol to become -1-, hence in 
this form yvldjol, but -1-, the passive causative can absorb -d- and 
results also in the form yvldjol. We shall see that the process is not 
an isolated, but rather a common phenomenon. 

3.48. A more complicated type of assimilation occurs with -c- the 
first person pronoun, because it may absorb the stem initial or the 
classifier, and it may change the stem initial (3.54-3.133.). 

3.49-3.53. Relationship between Vowel and Consonant 

3.49. The relationship between vowel and consonant is another 
important problem. One aspect of this question is the nasality of the 
vowel in relation to -n, and to a vowel with a high tone. For instance, 
in compounding, a stem normally ending in -n may lose n and the 
vowel may be nasalized, or the n may disappear entirely. This may 
be an effect in the same class with the shortening of noun stems as 
they appear in prefixed forms (cp. 5.39.), but it may also be a 
principle of contraction which parallels others, as we shall see (5.38.) : 

tai-dil, tsi-dil (< isin-dil) bouncing sticks (used in game) 
tsi-tda'\ tsi-tSa-' (< tsin-tda-') box; wood-bowl 
tsi-Uiz, tsi-Hiz < tsin-ltiz) crack in log, wood 
tj-tse-d (< tin-tse*d) ice cream; ice-pounded 
^q^d'tld* (< 'a'd-tt-rfa') he crawled into a hole 

do* ditci*cyi'8xf'dah (< ditcin ci-yi'sxj-dak) I have not died of hunger; 
hunger-has-not-killed-me (NT 50:7) 

3.50. Nasality or n may apparently be lost in compounds, but 
actually survives as the high tone of a vowel. A class of nouns 

30 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.50.-3.53. 

requires a high tone of the possessive: bitcf-h "his nose," instead of 
bitcf'h. All such nouns may be found in other Athabaskan languages 
as of the pattern -V-stem, or -n-stem. The important point here is 
not so much the derivation of the stems, but the fact that a process 
which operated in differentiating languages is at work in Navaho. 
We must, therefore, use the concept that nasality, n 9 and high tone 
are related. In practice, when I encounter a vowel with high tone, 
I conclude that nasality or n lurks within the vowel, and I try to 
discover its relation to the complex. This has proved to be a useful 
concept, but I do not feel justified in concluding that q is a vowel, 
that n in -an is a consonant, or that -i- of 'i- (< 'a-n-) is a vowel and 
nothing else. 

3.51. Many Navaho speakers use -e-, others use -i-, a habit which 
may be considered mechanical. In compounds, however, some insist 
upon -e-, and rightly, I believe, since -i- may be considered "pri- 
mary" whereas -e- is "secondary or derived" (5.1.). In rapid speech 
the differentiation is exceedingly difficult to make. In analysis it is 
impossible to sustain the differentiation conclusively, but there is 

good evidence that -e- is a combined form e*- is certainly secondary. 

Since -e- or -e*- results from a combination of -*- plus n> and since we 
have varying stems such as -ni\ -n\, and -we' (pres.) "say, tell," 
I should consider -we' as possibly equivalent to -ni plus -w-, as is -n{\ 
Once more then, I question whether -e is a vowel, or a vowel plus a 

3.52. The same problem comes up in connection with s which, 
may be "lost" in a high or lengthened vowel (3.98, 10.55, 10.107.), 
and again when ^-repetitive action appears in one paradigmatic 
form not only as xi-, but also as xe-> or xa- (10.114c, d, g.) or when 
xo-plaoe becomes xa- (10.116b.), the two last forms overlapping 
with those of rm-out of (10.85.). Is the vowel i, e, a, or o ? I conclude 
that we must have a variable scale by which to judge, a scale that 
forces us to keep in mind the possibility that one is not "the same" 
as another, and that the operating definition of the vowel must 
include the possibility that it may stand for something more, per- 
haps even a consonant. 

3.53. A comparable reconsideration must be conceived for the 
interrelationship of consonants. They are related in series exempli- 
fied by the following : 

y y y, x, s, z, dz, I, I 

y, g, y> % 
i f i, di 




xiic ltuso iwo series — J, c, dj ; and l, I, dl — seem phonetically and 
phonemically plausible, since they concern sounds, which by 
definition are related. Even y, g> y, and x have a class name — they 
are palatals — but the first relationship — y, y, x, s, z, dz, I, I — 
seems to cut quite radically across the phonetic definition. If y is 
related to g t y, and x, how can it be related to the alveolar sibilants 
and the laterals ? If y is related, on the one hand, to the alveolar 
sibilants and laterals, is it the "same" as the y related only to the 
palatals ? Apparently it is not, but is it then a phoneme ? We shall 
have to consider that it may be vowel, or merely the quantitative 
aspect of a vowel, and this is not included in a strict definition of 
a "sound." 

3.54-3.133. Consonant Combination 

3.54. This long, but necessary discussion will now be illustrated, 
first in connection with the effect of consonant combination. Of 
first importance in understanding (and therefore of "looking up") 
stems is the effect of classifiers upon stem initials. The final -d- of 
the dual first person pronoun has the same effects on the stem 
initial as d-classifier. They may be tabulated as follows: 

Table I 







































y (y) 






y, d, dz 



d, g 


d, dz 














I, dl 









































































3.55. All stem initials have been included in the table so that the 
effects of assimilation may be compared in various settings. It will 
be noted that d — either agentive classifier, or final consonant of 

32 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.55.-3.64. 

first person dual pronoun — is absorbed by b, d, t, t\ g, k, #, dz, ts, 
ti, dj, tc, t6, dl, tt, and tl. dz, dj, and dl may be stem initials without 
^-influence, but when d meets any of them, there is no change in the 
affricate, nor does d persist. Since all affricates have either ad or t 
attack, they behave like d and t, that is, they are unaffected by 
preceding d. 

3.56. Examples of consonants changed by contact with d follow; 
they include some of affricate initials to illustrate overlapping 
between two sounds which become an affricate, and the absorption 
of d by an affricate : 

3.57. d- > t: yi'fac (< yi-d-'ac) "we are going prog.;" yi'tic 
(< yvd-ic) "we are stringing beads ;" yitic (< yi-d-ic) "they are 
being led (on a string);" nvUrc (< nrd-'i'c) "we 2 are starting to 
lead them; we-2-attached-by-a-string-are-starting-for;" yvfol (< 
yvd-ol) "we 2 are floating prog." 

3.58. d-m > rrt: yvrtiqs (< yvd-mqs) "we 2 are rolling a sphere;" 
H'dvnlal (< 'vdvd-mal) "we 2 will gulp it down" 

3.59. d-n > n': drriah (< drd-nah) "we 2 shall crawl;" di'rifrh 
(< di'd-ne'h) "we 2 are starting to crawl;" nvriil (< nvd-nil) "pi. 
obj. have been laid down;" yvriil (< yi-d-nil) "we 2 are carrying 
pi. obj.;" yi'n'ih (< yrd-nih) "we 2 are milking;" nineiriih (< ninei- 
d-nih) "he cust. distributes them;" bi'tb'riij (< bi'ad-yo'-d-nij) "it 
has been plucked by someone" 

3.60. d-y> if (exceptional): (6- 'dxoni-yoi (< 'dxoni'd-yoi) "we are 
increasing in number" (YM 234); xonvyoi (< xonvd-yoi) "we 2 are 
brave, good at . . ., we 2 excel;" dini'yog (< dini'd-yog) "we 2 are 

3.61. d-y> d (exceptional): yvd4(< yi'd-yq) "we 2 are eating it;" 
yidq,'* (< yi-d-yq*') "it has been eaten" 

3.62. d-y > dz: yvdzol (< yi-d-yol) "we 2 are blowing;" yidzol 
(< yi-d-yol) "it is being blown;" nidzd'd (< ni-d-yfrd) "several are 
being driven" 

3.63. d-y > d (exceptional) : di'df'l (< dvd-yf'l) "we 2 will eat it" 

3.64. d-y> g: dvgfrl (<di*d-yfrl) "we 2 shall move a load;" yo-gfcl 
(< yo-d-yfrl) load is being moved prog., load is being carried;" 
yigaj (< yi-d-yaj) "it is being nibbled;" 'agfrh (< 'a-d-yfrh) "mar- 
riage is being arranged;" yigiz (< yi-d-yiz) "it is being moved as a 

3.65.-3.74. phonology 


3.65. d-z > d: no-dfrz (< n<yd-ZQ-z) "it has been torn in strips, it 
1^ v^i^o., ouiipjjca," yrag's [< yvd-zps) "we 2 are tearing it in 
strips;" 'ide-z (< H-d~ze*z) "something is singed" 

3.66. d-z > dz: yidza*z (< yi-d-za-z) "it has been snowing;" 
nrdzas (< nvd-zas) "we 2 are sprinkling it in a continuous line;" 
'anddzi' (< 'ana-d-zi') "he oust, rakes;" yrdzoh (< yvd-zoh) "we 2 
are marking it;" yvdzi'l (< ^t^z£*£)"we2arecomingtoastandstill;" 
'adzfrs (< 'a-d-zfrs) "something is being singed;" do'dzoh (< do*-d- 
zoA) "it is being carried in the mouth" 

3.67. d-s (< d-l-z) > Is: di'lzah (< dvd-l-zah) "we will find it 
gone;" dvlsas (< dvd-l~zas) "we are strewing it in a line;" nvlse'l 
(< ni-d-l-zfrl) "we 2 are growing up prog.;" srlsi'h (< svd-l-zvh) 
"we have missed the mark, made a mistake" 

3.68. d-dz > dfe : yi'dzf's (< yi'd-dzls) "we 2 are dragging it prog. ;" 
xadrdzih (< xadvd-dzih) "we 2 will speak out;" dvdzih (< dvd-dzih) 
"we 2 will be left, will survive" 

3.69. d-? > d?: yido'djW (< yido--d-j{l) "he will be blackened;" 
'adidi'djah (< 'adidvd-jah) "we 2 will spit;" bi'fodjih (< bi^ad-yo-d 
jih) "he is being named, called by name;" yrdjoh (< yvd-joh) "we 2 
are combing it" 

3.70. d-c (< d-£-?) > fc: dvlcih (< drd-l-jih) "we will mow it, cut it 
(as hair);" yvlcic (< yvd-l-jic) "we are poking it with slender obj. 
(as stick);" yi'lcf*' (< yvd-l-jf*') "we have blackened it " 

3.71. d-dy > dj: yidrdjfl (< yidvd-dji'l) "we 2 shall be black- 
ened;" si'dje*' (< si'd-dje^) "we pi. exist;" 6a* dvdjd'h "we 2 are 
giving him wood" 

3.72. d-l > I: yi'ldjq (< yvd-l-djq) "we 2 are stamping along;" 
yi'ldlal (< yvd-l-dlal) "we 2 are ripping it prog.;" yrlgic {< yi'd-l- 
gic) "blade cutting is being caused by us" 

3.73. d4> dl: yrdloh (< yrd-loh) "we 2 are looping, lassoing it;" 
yi'dWs (< yi'd-16's) "we 2 are leading one along on a rope;" svdlf'' 
(< si-d-ty') "we 2 have become;" naxadld (< naxa-d-ld) "ceremony; 

3.74. d-l > i: yt-Zd-Z (< yrd-l&l) "we 2 are whistling, singing in a 
high key;" yt'krl (< yi'd-la-l) "we hate him;" yi'Vwl (< yvd-l-wl) 
"we are sending him on an errand;" yvltas (< yi'd-l-tas) "we are 
twirling a small obj.;" yvltsos (< yi'd-l-tsos) "we 2 are moving 
fabriclike obj.;" yvlzi'l (< yvd-l-zi'l) "we 2 are blessing it;" se-lyin 
(< srd-Z-a:/ m) "we killed him for a fact" (EW 112:2) 

34 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.75.-3.81. 

3.75. d-dl> dl: yi'dty (<yi'd-dlq) "we 2 believe; we 2 are drinking 
it;" H'dle-c (< 'i'd-dle'c) "we 2 are painting something;" daxonrdla'h 
(< daxoni*d-dla*h) "we pi. are starting a ceremony;" yvdloh (< yvd- 
dloh) "we 2 are laughing" 

Of the changes effected by d, there are only a few examples of 
d-m > rri, d-y > ]), d-y > d, and d-z > d ; all others are quite common. 

3.76. A study of the chart with prefixed I shows assimilations or 
changes with y, y, and s, and with the laterals. The general rule is 
that d-y > dz t d> or y\ l-y > s, and l-y > ly, or Iz. Probably no verb 
stem has a primary initial s ; stems with ^-initial are equivalent to 
l-y, or Iz. Examples of changes with ^-classifier follow: 

3.77. l-y > s: xasd-' (< xa-l-yd*') "deserted, abandoned place;" 
naxasd (< naxa-l-yd) "he has caused ceremony to start;" yisqrd 
(< yi-l-yqrd) "he has her affection; she loves him;" yisil (< yi-l-yil) 
"he has grabbed it" 

3.78. l-z > s\ bil 'i'sa'l (< H'-l-zwl) "he sailed off in it (car);" 
yi'do'sq/l (< yrdo'-l-zq/l) "she will love him;" niriisq (< nirii-l-zq,) 
"it grows;" yise'h (< yi-l-zi'h) "he is making it pliable;" yo'sas 
(< yo'-l-zas) "he is strewing it in a line;" yosih (< yo'-l-zih) "he is 
causing sharp obj. to move swiftly" 

3.79. The causative I unvoices the blade alveolar as it does the 
alveolar sibilant : 

l-j > c: yiyvce' y (< yiyv-l-je^) "he has sheared it, he has caused 
cutting of woolly, grassy material;" neic<rd (< nei-l-jo'd) "he is 
dragging it about;" yd'dc$ (< yd'd-l-JQ) "there is goodness, satis- 
faction;" yicah (< yi-l-jah) "he is hooking it;" nic&h (< ni-l-jd'h) 
"she is combing your (hair)" 

3.80. The causative I before y-stem initial unvoices y, but both 
sounds remain : 

l-y > Ix: 'adilxdx (< 7 adi-l-ydx) "they are biting something;" 
dzo'lxal (< dzo'-l-yal) "he is twirling a clublike obj.;" 'arivlxi 
(< 'arii'-l-yf) "I have killed someone, something;" dilxi'' (< di-l-yi'') 
"it is thawing;" yil-xod (< yi-l-yod) "he caused oscillation;" yilxoj 
(< yi-l-yoj) "he caused tickling;" yi'ilxd-c (< yi'i-l-yax) "she is 
putting it to sleep" 

3.81. The same principle operates for the laterals preceding 
laterals as for d, that is, when one sound precedes a stem with the 
same initial, it assimilates to it ; the articulation is not doubled : 

14 > I: xonild*' (< xonil-W) "I have had a ceremony started;" 
di'lid (< di*-l-lid) "he burned it;" yiyvlqrd (< yiyv-l-lqrd) "he has 
increased it, caused it to increase" 

3.81.-3.84. phonology 35 

Of the three classifiers I is the most stable. It sometimes changes 
7« fn / hut, apparently the stem complex with Zn-initial is closely 
related to that with Z-initial. y and y as stem initials seem to be 
related to the laterals. Since these relationships are doubtless of 
historical derivation, and since the number of stems showing these 
changes is small, they will be discussed elsewhere (8.102, 8.103.). 

A single example of different construction is an exception to the 
rule that laterals in juxtaposition are not doubled: 'di ciye*l-le'l 
(< ciye-l do-k'l) "that will be my offering" (NT 116: 13). 

3.82-3.97. -c-first personal pronoun 

3.82. A common assimilation concerns the alveolar and blade 
alveolar sibilants, which may have reciprocal effects. The first 
personal pronoun -c- causes various changes of stem initial. It 
assimilates the classifiers I and I except in the perfective where its 
position may make it a test form. The changes with -c-first person 
are listed in Table II. Since -c- sometimes absorbs the classifier, or 
causes a change in the consonant cluster, such changes are also 

Table II 


y -stem 






-c-1 subj., ag. a 
■s- 3-3 pf. 8, y 
h final h 


hy, ha 



x, ha 















-c-1 subj., ag. c 
5- 3-3 pf . 8 
~h final I 


zl, al 




az, a 








* a may result from a combination of -l-y or -l-z. -c- has the same effect on 
both. The combination -l-y- > -a is exceptional, being found only with -yfrl 
"eat," whose stem initial is irregular and may perhaps be y. 

** a may result from -l-y- or -l-z- ; the effects of *-pf. with the a or either of 
these derivatives is the same. 

3.83. c-y > s: xonisq, (< xoni-c-y4) "I am aware of, wise about 
things, careful of it;" bixodesah (< bixode*-c-yah) "I miss it, I find 
it gone;" dine-sol (< dinex-yol) "I shall drive several" 

3.84. c-y > c (exceptional, stem initial not clear): ba- yicdh 
(< yie-ydh) "I caught up with him;" na-cdh (< na-c-ydh) "I am 
going about;" bvcd'h (< brc-yd-h) "I am going up (down) along it" 
(cp. binicyah "I am capable of;" biyah "he is capable of, it suffices" 
(YMG 25-6) 

4 Seicbard 

3 6 NAVAHO GRAMMA& 3.85.-3. 9J g 

3.85. c-y > ex (regular): dide-exdx (< dide-c-ydx) "I shall nibfy e 
it;" yiexqh (< yic-yqti) "I am killing them;" 'Miie-sxas (< l aMiex- 
yas) "I will scratch myself;" 'rcxa' (< 'i'C-ya') "I am shaking 
flexible obj. ;" a:a*ca:e'A (< ascrc-ye'A) "I am taking ropelike obj. out" 

3.86. c-z > «: ye'sis (< yex-zis) "I am singeing it;" yisoh (< t/ic- 
zoA) "I am marking it;" yisgs (< yic-zQ-s) "I am tearing it (as 

3.87. c-s (< l-y) > 5: s/rsoZ (< yic-l-yol) "I am rep. blowing on it;" 
bv 'aso'l (< 'ac-l-yo-l) "I am pumping air into it;" yisas (< yic-sas) 
"I am sprinkling it in continuous line prog." 

3.88. c-s (< l-y) > 5 (exceptional): bi* diye'si'l (< diyex-l-yf'l) 
"1 shall feed him, force food into him" 

3.89. c-s (< l-z) > ^: yiM (< yic-l-zin) "I am blessing it;" yvskl 
(< yex-l-ze'l) "I am dressing hide;" y azdiye*sih (< 'azdiyex-l-zih) 
"I shall throw sharp obj. beyond rep.;" ncsoh (< nex-l-zoh) "I am 
marking it" 

3.90. c-/ > c: de-cah (< dec-jah) "I shall spit;" yide m cvl (< yidex- 
jH) "I shall call him by name;" yico-h (< yic-jd'h) "I am combiing 
its hair;" ^tcic (< yic-jic) "I am breathing it in" 

3.91. c-c (< 2-/) > c: yici'h (< yic-l-ji'h) "I am cutting strands, 
I am shearing, mowing it;" ^iepe (< yic-l-jgc) "I am throwing hoop- 
like obj. ;" yicg* (< yic-l-jg-) "I am taming it, breaking colt" 

3.92. c-Z-caus. > c: nacnic (< rvac-l-nic) "I am working;" 'dxdcyq, 
(< 'dxdc-l-y$) "I have sense;" nax'a? (< nax-l-'a') "I am being sent 
on errand;" xexyal (< xex-l-yal) "I am giggling on belly;" dexyal 
(< dex-l-yal) "I am eating meat;" 'ddicje-h (< 'ddic-l-jfrh) "I am 
shaving;" dinicyo' (< dinic-l-yc?) "I run slowly;" 'oc^c (< 'ac-l-jic) 
"I am dancing;" 'ddicjo-h (< 9 ddic-l~jo-h) "I am brushing myself, 
combing my hair" 

3.93. c-Z-stem initial > cZ: wrf£ (< 7w;-Z/) "I am;" yicte'h (< yic-le-h) 
"I am becoming;" 'dxlvl (< \ac-lvl) "I am creating, making it;" 
yicli'l (< yic-U'l) "I am carrying a ropelike obj., a pair of obj.;" 
naxonclin (< naxonc-lin) "I look like him, I resemble him" 

3.94. c-fe > 52: 'dxodideszih (< 'dxodidex-l-zih) "I shall become 
motionless" (YM 239); 'dkdszis (< 'dkdc-l-zis) "I am putting on 
belt" (YM 243) 

3.95. c-Z-caus. > c: yisbqs (< yic-hbqs) "I am driving it (car, 
wagon); I am causing it to roll prog.;" xode'cbjrl (< xodex-l-bi'l) 
"I shall build a hogan;" xadicbin (< xadic-l-bin) "I am filling it; 

3.95.-3.99. pflONOLOGY 37 

I am causing filling;" xanictca'd (< xanic4-tca*d) "I am carding 
wool ; I-am-causing-it-to-swell-out M 

3.96. c-l (< l-l) > cl: dide'clil (< didex-l-lil) "I shall cause it to 
smoke, burn;" ndxide'dah (< ndxidcc-l-lah) "I am choosing, 
selecting them;" yield (< yic-l-h'l) "I am becoming" 

3.97. c-lx (< l-y) > ex: 'acxoc (< 'ac-Z-yoc) "I am sleeping;" 
yiexoj (< yic-l-yoj) "I am tickling him;" 'adiexd-c (< 'adtc-Z-ya'c) 
"I am biting something;" dicxal (< dic-l-yal) "I am opening my 

3.98-3.111. 5t-perfective 

3.98. The formulas for combination of d, I, and Z, and c are 
essentially the same as Hoijer's, stated in somewhat different terms. 
However, my analysis of si-perfective differs greatly from his. 15 
si- seems to be a persistent prefix of the perfective combined with 
the completive inflectional -ni- which may be separated by the 
personal pronouns in the intransitive and active transitive (10.55, 
10.107.). The position of these two prefixes in the third person 
active transitive, where si- is pushed toward the stem by yi-thxrd 
object, gives rise to the phonetic effect of voicing — si- in this 
position becomes -z-. This process enters into the matter only when 
the zero stem is used ; whenever the stem is affected by a classifier 
(d, I, or I), the prefix of the third person perfective is si- or -«-. It 
seems clear, therefore, that basically si- or -s- is the stable form, and 
that -z- is to be explained on the basis of position. 16 si-perfective 
may therefore be analyzM like other prefixes, noting first the 
effects of -8- on the stem and stem complex, and explaining -z- as a 
prefix complex, somewhat unusual, but paralleled by other prefix 
combinations (10.59.). 

3.99. -s- before a stem consonant has an effect comparable to that 
of -c-first personal pronoun, but the alveolar and blade-alveolar 
positions are reversed, that, is, the alveolar sibilant -s- assimilates 
the blade-alveolar to it, or the blade-alveolar sibilants become 
alveolar sibilants. If -s- precedes a stem -z- or -s- initial, they may 
merge and only one s results. If s- or -z- precedes a stem with a 
blade alveolar, -s- changes to -c- and -z- changes to -j-. Such a -c- 

16 Hoijer 1945c, pp. 19-20, 43-8. 

16 Hoijer considers -z- as "augmented by d, I, or V* (Ph 43). I consider the 
stem "augmented 11 by the classifier, to use his terminology, as usual, and 
-z- the exception because of the position of si-. In my terminology -z- occurs 
before the zero classifier, -s- before all the others, or before all stem complexes. 


38 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.99.-3.106. 

assimilates to -c-initial, again leaving only one -c. Just as -c-first 
person pronoun assimilates to I and I, so does s-perfective, but 
either can assimilate only one lateral, and if a stem complex is 
composed of a causative and a lateral stem initial, the second stands, 
but is unvoiced by s, that is, s~l > s, but s-l-l > si. s-c(< l-j) > c, but 
8-l-j > cj\s< l-z or < l-y > 5, but s-l-z > sz. The unstable initials y 
and y present a few exceptions as they do for -c-first person. 

Table II indicates changes brought about by si-perfective third 
person subject with a third person object. 

Examples are as follows : 

3.100. s-y > y (exceptional): de*yd (< desyd) "he started from;" 
xode-yd (< xodes-yd) "short singing" (cer.); 'ane'yd (< 'ane m s-yq) 
"maturation; something has matured" (YME 54) 

3.101. s-z > z: de-za' (< des-za') "he belched;" nde'zid (< ndes- 
zid) "time passed;" nvzq, (< nes-zq) "he is wellbred" 

3.102. 8-8 (< l-y) > s: xo'sa* (< xo-8-l-ya?) "he missed it, found 
it gone;" ninisq, (< nini-s-l-yd) "he grew up" 

3.103. s-8 (< l-z) > s: yixosa 9 (< yixos-l-za?) "he missed it;" 
yidesas (< yides-l-zas) "he sifted it;" yisvh (< yis-l-zvh) "he 
missed target, he made a mistake;" yisil (< yis-l-zil) "he grabbed 

3.104. s-c (< l-j) > c: naxac&h (< naxas-l-jo-h) "he has swept a 
place;" yide-cd'd (< yides-l-jo-d) "he has dragged a fabriclike obj.;" 
nSicoh (< niis-l-joh) "he moistened it" 

The same change takes place in an entirely different setting: 
di-gicf' (< drgis-cf') "it must have been twisting" 

3.105. s-Z-caus. > s: xa'asde*' (< xa'as-l-de*') "some group moved 
up out;" kina'sda (< kina'8-l-da) "she has menstruated for the first 
time;" ca- 'dxo-syq (< J dxos-l-yq) "she took care of me;" 'ddisyaz 
(< 'ddis-l-yaz) "he scratched himself;" yicyi'j (< yic-l-yi'j) "he is in 
a crouching position;" nesyal (< ne-8-l-yal) "he threw himself 
down;" desyis (< des-l-yis) "he dodged (a blow);" tsd'dszi' 
(< tsffaS'l-zi') "yucca; main part is fibrous;" tarie*szani m (< ta'anes- 
l-zanv) clan name; naxjah (< nas-l-jah) "he went hunting" 

3.106. 3-Z-stem initial > zl: bidanvzlah "they are tied here and 
there;" na-zlf "it flows about;" na-zlo* "he moved loop, lasso 
about;" biddne'zldh (stat.) "they are touching (as branches of a 
shade or corral);" ba* 'ayaxo-zlv' "he suspected him" (YM 133); 
yizlih "he tasted it" (YM 135); xazty' "things have become;" 
dd-dlce xa-zld "oblong field" 

3.107.-3.111. PHONOLOGY 39 

3.107. 5=24=stem initial > si: yisldh (< yis-l-ld) "he has it (light- 
ning arrow);" citte'esla (< ciUi'as-l-la) "he has a claim on me;" 
nidjo-sld^ (< nidjo-s-l-W) "he hated you" 

3.108. s-l-x > sx: yisxi (< yis-l-yf) "he killed one;" yisxal 
(< yis-l-xal) "he clubbed it" 

3.109. Voicing a consonant as in yiz-3-3 si-perfective is not an 
isolated phenomenon. A comparable form is djilgai "he (4) is 
white," in which I is not passive causative but Ji-natural (10.124.), 
voiced because of its position in the complex : li-dji-, or dji~li- > 
djil-. The process may be related to that in which certain nouns 
with voiceless initials take possessive prefixes and voice the stem 
initial (5.9.). When yi-3 object comes in contact with a xi-prefix 
the result is yi- (10.114d, e.) or, with a more complex combination 
of prefixes, yo- or yo'- (10.109.). The voicing of si-, like other processes, 
is a function of the selection and position of the several prefixes 
rather than of the particular perfective or person. 

3.110. The combination of si-perfective with the first person 
subject -c- is another point of difference between Hoijer's analysis 
and mine. I analyze the form se~ of sitf "I exist as an animate obj." 
as si- < si-pf.-c-l subj.-m-completive. This form illustrates the 
importance of e as a combined form, the effect of the combination 
of sibilants si- and -c-, and of position, which differentiates the 
pronominal prefixes of the active (first subject) and the passive 
(first agent). In comparison with the formula just given the passive 
has the form sis- < 5i-pf.-m-c0mpl.-c-l ag. ; c> s by the general rule 
of sibilant assimilation. The final s or c of si-s-, which may become 
cic- if there is a blade alveolar in the stem, follows the same rules 
given for -c-first personal pronoun (3.82-3.97.). 

3.111. si-perfective has yet another effect, which really belongs 
with contraction rather than assimilation, but since one phonetic 
process interacts with others, all perfectives are exceedingly com- 
plex in structure. The effect is of the fourth person pronominal 
prefix dji- whose position is as near initial as possible in the con- 
jugation (6.19.). The formula of the fourth person si-perfective is 
dji-4: subj. (or ag.J-s-pf.-m-compL, and it contracts to dzi- in the 
intransitive. Here we have an assimilative change from dji- to dzi- 
because of dj plus s. The transitive active form of the zero stem is 
dziz-, that of the d-, l~, and I- forms is dzis-. 

The conclusion to be drawn seems to be that -z-, the sonnat, is 
the "aberrant" form in need of explanation, not -s- which retains its 
identity in some form and dominates other prefixes with which it 
comes into contact. The analysis is compatible with that of other 

40 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.111.-3.116 

even more complicated forms, for instance, dzi-ajw&y §fi& Wjv- 
attitude, in the paradigms of which dji- and dzi- shift about accord- 
ing to the position each occupies in relation to other prefixes 
(10.121-10.121 d.). 

3.112-3.133. Finals 

3.112* Final h of prefixes affects certain consonants that follow in 
several ways: A voiced consonant may be unvoiced by h. A sound 
may be changed entirely, as y to s, by the prefix final, either with or 
without the persistence of A. The changes are summarized in Table II 
(p. 35). 

3.113. Final h of prefixes assimilates to following y and the 
sibilants in a manner consistent with the rules already given. 
Prefixes most commonly entering into combination ending in h 
are: O'oh "fall short of, be less than, just miss being. . . ;" dah- 
"forth, forward; suspended;" and -oA-second person dual pronoun. 
dah- is a pre-paradigmatic prefix and does not occur in a position of 
conjugation, that is, it must be followed by other prefixes which 
have a position nearer the stem or stem complex. Examples of 
changes brought about by h are : 

3.114. h-y-j>Tefix initial < h: dahilteos (< dah-yiltsos) "you are 
holding fabriclike obj.;" daho-ltsos (< dah-yo-ltsos) "you 2 are 
holding a fabriclike obj.;" dahvte 9 (< dah-yvfe') "he started to run 
forward;" dahe-z'q, (< dah-yiz'q) "he has suspended a round obj." 

3.115. My material, from both ^-speakers and others, has final h 
of a prefix persisting before s: 17 dahsild "ropelike obj., pair of obj. 
lay upon (a shelf)" (EW 106:9); dahsity "narrow rigid obj. is 
suspended, lies on top of...; there is a crescent moon;" do* 
'ahsoxodo'be'jdah "things are hopeless, there is no hope;" tsin bq- 
dahsa 9 ^ "apple (fruit) is hanging on tree" (FH). 

3.116. Final A of a prefix unvoices a following voiced consonant, 
usually a sibilant: dacdcyd (< dah-dji-de'yd < dah-j-de m y&) "he (4) 
has started to go forward;" datsiztj (< ddh-dziz-ti) "he(4) is lying on 
top;" bo'ocne*r4 (< bVoh-dji-nt'Vq) "he(4) cannot afford it, he falls 
short of it" (YM 10); 9 dlacdo-le-l (< 9 dlah^-do'U'l) "they(4) will 
assemble" (EW 106 : 9) ; 18 bq-cde-yd (< bq*h djide-yd) "he(4) passed 
them" (NT 54:23); bixno'td (< brh djino-fy) "he(4) put his hand 
into it" (NT 78:17). 

17 Cp. Hoijer 1946c, p. 39. 

18 Cp. Haile 1938, p. 248, n. 43. 

3.117.-3.126. PHONOLOGY 41 

3.117. Final h of -oA-second dual pronominal prefix has effects 
comparable to those of final h of daA-forward, suspended, but since 
it occurs in juxtaposition with the stem or stem complex, its mani- 
festations are more extended. Generally it unvoices a consonant, but 
like c and s y it has other assimilative effects: 

3.118. -oh-y-stem initial > -o%-(exceptional): to* 'axonahyoi 
(< to- 'axond-oh-yoi) "many of you;" 'ohyo'l "you 2 are inhaling, 
taking a breath" (YM 234) 

3.119. -oh-y-stem initial > -ohs- or -os- (exceptional): 'ohsq, 
(< 'a-yi-oh-yq) "you 2 are eating something;" xonosq (< xoni-oh-yd) 
"you 2 are wise;" dinohsd'd (< dinoh-yo'd) "you 2 are driving a few" 
(YM 233) 

3.120. -oh-y- > -ox-: yoxd-d (< yoh-yd'd) "you 2 are shaking 
fabriclike obj.;" do-xas (< do-h-yas) "you 2 will claw it, scratch it 
with nails;" 'o-xeh (< 'o-h-yeh) "you 2 are being married" 

3.121. -o^-y-stem initial> -ohs- (exceptional): do % hsfl (< do'h-y('l) 
"you 2 will eat it" 

3.122. -oh-z-stem initial > -os-: didosah (< dido-h-zah) "you 2 
will belch;" ndo'sil (< ndo'h-zil) "you 2 will rake them together;" 
nosi'h (< noh-zi'h) "you 2 want it;" yosi'h (< yo-h-zi'h) "you. 2 are 
coming to a standing position;" bitdqh xo'soh (< xo'h-%oh) "you 2 
draw a line of protection" (EW 110: 12) 

3.123. -oh-s- (< l-z) > -0A5-: yoksis (< yoh-l-zfrs) "you 2 are 
singeing it;" bixodo-hsah (< bixodo-h-l-zah) "you 2 will find it gone;" 
dohsas (< doh-l-zas) "you 2 are sifting it;" nohse'l (< noh-l-zi'i) 
"you two 2 are growing up" 

3.124. -o^'-stem initial > -oc-: xodido*cah (< xodido'h-jah) "you 
2 will spit;" yido'ci'l (< yidd'h-jvl) "you 2 will call him by name;" 

yoco& (< yoh-joh) "you 2 are combing it" 


3.125. -0&-c (< £-?') > -o/rc-: do-hcih (< do-h-l-jih) "you 2 are 
mowing it, cutting strands;" yo-hcic (< yo'h-l-jic) "you 2 are poking 
it (with a stick);" yo-hci'h (< yo'h-l-ji'h) "you 2 are blackening it;" 
naxohco'h (< naxoh-l-jo'h) "you 2 are sweeping a place;" yohcg'h 
(< yoh-l-JQ'h) "you 2 are breaking a horse, taming it" 

3.126. -o^-Z-pass. caus. > -ol-: dolde-h (< doh-l-dfrh) "you 2 are 
starting with a group;" yaKoldjo-l (< yah'a-oh-l-dj&l) "bunchy 
substance is being carried in by you 2;" ba- 'dxolyq> (< ba r 'dxoh- 
l-yq) "you 2 are taking care of it;" do-lzih (< do*h-l-zih) "sharp obj. 
will be hurled by you 2 ;" ncrlje'h (< na-h-l-je'h) "you 2 are hunting" 

42 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.127.-3.133. 

3.127. -o^-Z-stem initial > -ol-\ 'oh'h (< 9 6h-le'h) "it is being done 
by you 2 ;" yolqrl (< yoh-lqsl) "you are increasing, becoming many;" 
xonoli (< xonoh-li) "you exist;" naxonolin (naxonoh~lin) "you look 
like, you resemble;" yoloh (< yoh-loh) "you 2 are roping, lassoing 
it;" yo&rd (< ydh-lo'd) "you 2 are lapping, sipping it" 

3.128. -oh-l-y- > -oly-: yo'lyal (< yo-h-l-yal) "you 2 are eating 
meat, tearing meat from bone;" yinolyi (< yinoh-l-ye) "you 2 are 
called, have the name. . . ;" J adin&lyil (< J adin6h-l-yil) "you 2 will 
doze;" xadido'lyoc (< xadido-h-l-yoc) "you will shout" (YM 86) 

3.129. -oh-l-z- > -o2z-: 'akaso'lza'z (< 'dkdso-h-l-za-z) "you have 
your belts on" (YM 243): sodo'hin (< sido'h-l-zin) "you have 
prayed" (YM 242): ! } dxodido-lzih (< 'dxodido-h-l-zih) "you will calm 
down, become motionless" (YM 239) 

3.130. -oW-caus. > -o2-: yah'oldjd'l (< yah'a-oh-l-djfrl) "you 2 are 
carrying bunchy substance in;" 'dldi'h (< 'dh-l-di'h) "you are 
destroying it;" ydlti' (< yah-l-iV) "you 2 are talking" 

3.131. -oh-l-y- > -olx-: do'lxal (< doh-l-yal) "you 2 will club it;" 
dcrlxe-l (< do'h-l-ye'l) "you are calming down;" ndlxes (< nah-l- 
y&8) "you 2 are turning it around;" nmiolxod (< narioh-l-yod) "you 
2 are lame" 

3.132. -oA-Z-caus.-Z-stem initial > -oZ-: didolil (< didoh-l-lil) "you 
will make it burn, smoke;" yoZa/A (< y6h-l4qrh) il yo\i are increasing 
in number;" yoh'h (< yoh-l~h'h) "you are creating, making it" 

3.133. The influence of h as a stem final is helpful in reconstructing 
stems whose endings are doubtful, h is one of the few consonants 
that may end a stem (-CVC), but it is sometimes so feebly articulated 
that doubt is left as to whether the stem is -CV-zero or -CVh. A clue 
to this problem may be found in the suffixes which are freer than 
prefixes or stems. Such suffixes as the nominalizers, -r, -£, and -igv, 
-6* "custom, way;" -e-' "future subordination ;" |" "past, afore- 
mentioned;" -»•' "after having. . . ;" -ic "interrogative" tend to be 
attached in a manner that indicates the stem final. If it is zero, the 
suffix vowel may cluster with the preceding vowel, or the suffix 
may have the initial y, really a glide consonant. If the stem final is 
h, the suffix seems to be hV, and if the stem is an open syllable with 
a nasalized vowel, whether or not it is pronounced, the suffix has the 
form -nV. If the stem has any other consonant final the suffixes have 
the forms mentioned. A few examples follow: 'dhi "fog, mist;" 
tsehpcf' "surely he must have referred to a rock ;" ntm-higr "the one 
that is wide, large;" cddiyp "my deceased older sister;" 'akone' 9 
(< 'aky-e-') "you'll see, it will happen so;" fa* do- 'odinini "don't say 

3.133.-3.136. phonology 43 

that, don't let him rpaa.V thu»" (NT 136:23) (cp. 'ddini "you 
speak thus"). 

The process here referred to is not always consistent, but I believe 
it may prove a helpful device to differentiate some stem finals and 
suffix initials which may be of aid in historical reconstruction. For 
example, I sometimes hear xa'dff for xa'dt'i "whatever." AB, despite 
the fact that he is an n-speaker, protested that xa'qtf was "wrong," 
yet we find xa'dfrne*' "whatever it may be in future." At the very 
least, the forms pose a problem which, when properly worked out, 
may yield useful results about stem structure. 

3.134—3.135. Tone Change and Assimilation 

3.134. The relation of nasality and n to tone has been indicated 
(3.49-3.51.). Tone change is not limited to the nasals, but, as we 
have seen, may be concerned with si-perfective (3.98.). It is a 
question whether the survival of consonants in a high tone belongs 
under assimilation or contraction, but it is mentioned here to account 
for some forms already discussed and others to be encountered later 
(10.117-10.118 g.). 

3.135. Although I do not agree with Hoijer that "inherent tone" 
has been determined, it is obvious that certain elements have a more 
dominating effect than others. It seems, however, that such 
dominance can be accurately expressed only in the relationship of 
one prefix to another ; it is difficult to see how it can be absolute. For 
instance, yi-3 object has a low tone which dominates many other 
prefixes in its vicinity, and yi-S passive subject dominates in a 
different way. Each derives its strength from its origin and, possibly, 
from its position at the front of the verb paradigm. Another example 
is dji-4k subject, whose tone is less dominating than dji-4 agent. 
Neither is "more or less" dominating, but each has great power to 
affect other prefixes in its vicinity (cp. 10.55, 10.90a.). 

3.136-3.140. Interrelation of Phonetic Processes 

3.136. If I seem to reiterate the importance of interrelationships, 
it is because they obscure, as well as clarify Navaho grammar. One 
vowel is related to others and influences them retroactively ('a- ? a- 
> HH-, Vo-, etc.) (3.30, 10.76 b.); vowels and consonants are related 
('a-n- > '{-, y q>- > -an, or -a*n\ n> - or r; -a'a-di- > -a'ti-); some 
consonants change in contact with others (-l-z > -s-; -l-j > -c-, 
-h-j- > -c-); alveolar sibilants become blade alveolars and the 
reverse. Tone, which is thought to belong to vowels, nevertheless is 

44 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 3.136.-3.139. 

affected by consonants (n, s, c). As the prefix paradigms show 
(10-10.124.), length may stand for a vowel or a consonant, or both 
since several syllables of the primary form CV may persist only in a 
lengthened vowel. And further, many processes of assimilation and 
contraction operate at the same time (dji~ > -/- and may be affected 
by preceding Ca'a- so that the result is CVj'C; yi-si-ni- > yiz-\ and 
yi-si-ni-l- > yis- ; or yiz-with a blade alveolar > yij-)- 

3.137. Contraction, involving shortening of the theoretical form 
CV to C, lengthening, change of tone, lengthening and change of 
tone; voicing, unvoicing, and glottalization of consonants, distorts 
any attempt at a realistic theory of the syllable. Probably Navaho 
in particular, and Athabaskan in general, may require the revision 
of many so far accepted definitions, (cp. 10,35-10.46.). 

3.138. The greatest difficulty, in the light of what seem to be 
conflicting results, is in arrangement. If a stem with initial z is found 
in the form s, or a prefix combination Va- appears as Ve-, 'i'i-, or 
Vo-, how is either to be found by the reader of Navaho ? If a prefix 
si-harm is present as -cr- or yo'-, how is it to be indicated so as to be 
understood ? The compilation of any lexicon and the presentation 
of any grammar present many problems, but those posed by Navaho 
phonetic interrelationships have not been squarely faced. In this 
work they have been indicated by different arrangements. I have 
tried to remember that the reader has before him only one form ; 
that he should be able to find the form in the grammar and lexicon 
as it appears in the context he is reading. By constant repetition — 
of form, of variation, of interrelationship — and by numerous cross 
references I have tried to indicate the relationship between form 
and vocabulary. 

3.139. As we shall see when analyzing, there may be various 
reasons for any one form — overlapping is a hazard which may be 
handled only if relationships are constantly kept in mind. Over- 
lapping of form is due to the fact that a few consonants and vowels 
have been overworked, distinguished by the to us unfamiliar pro- 
cesses of variation of quantity, tone, nasality, glottalization, and the 
like. Furthermore, there are what almost seem to be infinite sub- 
divisions of an idea. For instance, one "starts a motion from a 
point," but he also "starts forward." The first idea is understand- 
able as an inceptive, the second as a double inceptive, but Navaho 
does not stop with these. It also adjusts a start so that it may be 
progressive, continuative, or completive, and such a start may be 
interrupted by pausing or by "getting stuck." All these ideas con- 
cern a prefix di~ which is relatively simple compared with prefixes 
of form ni- or yi-. 

3. 140. PHONOLOGY 45 

3-140. And not only do we have splitting of ideas differentiated 
by intricate processes, but we must also deal with phonetic diversity 
in the population. Diversity involves not only the history of Atha- 
baskan, but also the extreme tolerance of adaptation characteristic 
of the Navaho, a cultural, perhaps a psychological development. 
Besides the task of unraveling the numerous relationships of forms 
as they stand, we are obliged to discover the limitations to which 
any one form is restricted. They may be ascertained by continual 
comparison, but the comparison must be held down to similars, 
especially in the same series, that is, in the paradigms. 
^Although the conditions posed by the language as it now exists may 
seem difficult, they have not by any means resulted in chaos, nor is 
their disentanglement hopeless. It is likely that the rules and 
formulas here presented will be greatly revised and simplified. If so, 
such simplification must take note of the elements that go into the 
shortened forms, instead of combining unrelated elements and 
meanings in classes too simplistic for significance. 

4.-4.36. THE WORD 

4. In their discussions of other Athabaskan languages Sapir and 
Hoijer assume that the noun is the primary form, and that verbs 
derive from it. They are careful, however, to note that the question 
is a large and intricate one which cannot be settled by any one 
language alone. 1 Athabaskan languages, such as Mattole, Hupa, 
Kato, and others, seem to be much simpler in form than Navaho and 
would, therefore, point to Sapir's conclusion which is accepted by 
Hoijer for Navaho without question. 

Navaho seems to be a great melange of various Athabaskan 
elements — nominal, verbal, adverbial, or independent. It is still too 
early to determine the original form of the word because of the free- 
dom with which these elements combine. Nevertheless there are 
suggestive clues, and it should be remembered that Navaho is far 
removed from primitive or original Athabaskan. 

When he reconstructed the history of Athabaskan Sapir derived 
the basic verbs of motion and state from a few nominal stems. 2 
Certainly he was justified in this procedure since the basic verbs of 
motion with ■ their corresponding static forms are found in all 
languages for which we have examples. Related nouns, however, are 
even with our presentday extensive vocabulary, relatively few, and 
the process of derivation, from verb to noun, or the reverse, is not 
by any means clear. On the other hand, an interrelation between 
the so-called parts of speech is quite obvious. Since it is by no means 
limited to noun and verb, but includes elements such as post- 
positions, which are as basic and "primitive" as nouns and verbs in 
all the languages, and since postpositions become prefixes, tense- 
aspect elements, as well as nominal and adverbial prefixes, all these 
relationships will be discussed here. Many of them pose far-reaching 
questions as to what a noun, verb, or adverb is, not to speak of the 
reasons for the particular forms in Navaho. 

4,2. The data seem to me to point to a verbal origin as more basic 
than the nominal. My conclusion is derived from the close phonetic 
and morphological relationship between the different parts of 

1 Sapir 1923; Li 1930a, p. 62; Goddard 1910, pp. 107ff.; 1912, pp. 19ff. 

2 Sapir 1923. 


4.3.-4.6. ts:e word 47 

4.3. Grammatically noun, pronoun, verb, adjective, and postposi- 
tion may be differentiated. Each is treated in a distinctive way, but 
there is much overlapping. 

4.4. The theory that the noun is the original base probably origin- 
ates in the large number of monosyllabic stems, many of which are 
phonetically similar to verb stems. Such monosyllabic stems may 
be used independently, whereas the simplest verb is a compound of 
a stem with at least one prefix. I know of only a few Navaho verb 
forms without a prefix. 

However, the primary meaning of nouns, pronouns and post- 
positions, and other elements seems to be verbal; so common is the 
verbal meaning of the nouns, pronouns, and locatives that a great 
deal of idiomatic communication may be carried on without any 
verbs whatsoever. The translations "it is a garment" fe-'), "it is a 
flint'* (bfrc), "it is my mother" (rimy) seem much better than 
"garment," "flint," "my mother." Similarly, "it is I, I am the one" 
(ci) y "it is mine" (ci' y ) "it is for my benefit" (cd), "it is with, by 
means of it" (6e*), "it is over him" (biki), are better renditions of 
Navaho than "I," "mine," "for me," "with it," "over him," 

4.5. Possessed nouns, that is, noun stems which seldom occur 
without a possessive prefix, are an outstanding feature of Atha- 
baskan, although the absoluteness of the possessive requirement has 
perhaps been overstressed for Navaho. Some nouns, particularly 
those referring to body parts and kinship terms, usually have the 
possessive prefix, but such nouns occasionally occur without it. 
Perhaps to be explained by poetic license is the independence of 
body part nouns mentioned in songs; they occur, however, after a 
series of similar nouns with the possessive prefix. 3 

Poetic license is not the sole explanation, however, as the follow- 
ing examples indicate: ke didilye "Moccasins-are-laid-in-the-fire" 
(place name) (NT 32:14); kehi ridzo'fe*zi' 9 "after putting on his 
moccasins" (NT 34:10); keh$- gone' 'ado'lni*' "he reached into the 
place where the moccasins had been" (NT 32:22); ke bvh djinil 
"he(4) shook it (dust) into his moccasins" (EW 196:24). he "moc- 
casins" in these examples is to be compared with -ke'' "foot, foot- 
gear, moccasin, shoe," interpreted as a possessed noun, with ke- 
"foot," listed as a "nominal prefix" (5.48.), -ke* 7 "track, footprint," 
a possessed noun, and -ke^ "following, behind, next to, back of," 
a postposition (7.79). 

4.6. Another characteristic of the possessed noun suggests its 
verbal quality. All the possessive prefixes have the same form as the 

3 Haile 1943, pp. 71, 73ff. 

48 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 4.6.-4. 10. 

objective prefixes of the transitive verb in the active voice, and of 
the subjective prefixes in the passive voice, with the exception of 
a?a-fourth personal possessive. The objective-subjective prefix of the 
verbal series is xo- which combines with the aspective prefix yi- 
continuative to become xa-. The so-called possessive xa-fourth 
person may, therefore, be viewed as the subject of the passive verb 
form — xa-mq, "his(4) mother" would then be analyzed as xo-yi-mq 
> xa-mq "he(4) is being mothered." 

4.7. The prefixes used with the postpositions and sometimes 
called "objective prefixes" are formally the same as the possessive 
prefixes ; they are so uniform that it seems unnecessary to different- 
iate them in two series. The only reason for doing so seems to be the 
fact that in Indo-European languages the preposition, to which the 
Navaho postposition corresponds, takes an object. We shall see that 
the phonetic and semantic relationship between some postpositions 
and verb stems is so close as to suggest that postpositions also are 
primarily verbal. 

4.8. xwe' < xo-e* "with, by means of him(4)" and xol "with, 
accompanying him(4)" suggest that xo- is the primary pronominal 
prefix, whatever it may be called. Since -e* "with instrumental," 
-i'h "into," and -I "with accompaniment" are postpositions phoneti- 
cally different from most, the theory that the postposition generally 
derives from the verbal form of the type yi-ta' "it is between. . . , it 
is placed between," seems justified. If so, the compound of "noun" 
and "postposition" would actually be a verb form, differing from 
the usual verb form merely in its simplicity rather than in its 
quality or function. It would thus be interpreted as a passive, "they 
are betweened," and with a noun, "I am mothered." Such an inter- 
pretation seems to account for much more than the classifications 
hitherto made, although of course the divisions, noun, postposition, 
and verb are justified as a matter of convenience. 

4.9. A small class of verbs seems further to corroborate the con- 
clusion. Such verbs consist of a stem with a "possessive" prefix, 
the only change in the paradigm being the "possessive," better con- 
sidered as a passive subject (cp. 9.2.): 

si-dzvl I am strong 
rd-dzi'l you are strong 
bi-dzid he is strong 
xa-dzi'l he (4) is strong 
nxi-dzi-l we, you 2 are strong 

4.10. The stem -trn "road, trail, path," apparently nominal, is 
treated as a verb in that it takes verbal prefixes : 

4.10.-4.13. THE WORD 49 

'a-ti*n road, trail 

tcidi bi-ti-n highway, auto road * 

bikd^ ^a-ti'ti highway; on-it road 

tsita* dibi ^aH~ti*n mountain sheep trail; rocks-between sheep their- 

trail-leads-beyond (FW 57:6) 
'andbi-ti-n his trail back (YM 207) 
td* 'e'e-ti-n trail leads just (so far) (NT 168:3) 
t^4-ti-n exit, doorway, the way out : "* *■- e J e "fc * > o 

yas bi- na'a-ti-n path in snow; snow in-it here-and-there-something-leads 
yd^abi-ti-n his trail is lost (YM 207) 

The examples show that what appears to be a conjugation (the 
stem -tvn is distinctive) has many of the ordinary verbal prefixes, 
but a possessive seems also to be thematic. They may be extended 
variations of the possessed verbs of 4.9., but since -ti m n may be a 
stem of motion, perhaps it has more forms that those of possessed 
verbs which may be static. The point here is that the complexes 
have nominal (possessive) and verbal (conjugated) forms. 

4.11. Apparently -Ice-' "track" is comparable in the following: 

nabi-Jcd-* his tracks were (visible) here and there (NT 130:23) 

'abi-kfr'' his tracks led off 

naffl-ki*' track him 

nasil-ki'' I tracked him 

xode--M*' there was a footprint (EW 90: 11) 

The last three examples are verbal with no nominal traits, yet I 
have not found any other verbal form of the stem -M'\ 

4.12. Another example seems to be a possessive noun used as a 
verb — bit nd-bi-ycl "with them another offering" — the possessive 
of ~ye*l "offering" is bi-ye*l, nd*- "again" takes the inflective prefix 
(-nd-) which raises the tone of 6i-possessive (10.94aff.). The same 
process operates in the forms 'andbitvn "his trail back," and 
'and^d-ti-n "another trail." 

4.13. Despite these unusual forms some nouns are differentiated 
from verbs by their form: They may be monosyllabic stems, they 
may have possessive prefixes, they are often independent. Normally 
they precede the verb, if there is one. Verbs also may be determined 
by their form, since they require prefixes. However, if the noun 
immediately precedes a verb with a simple prefix, particularly yi- 
progressive or yi-continuative of the third person, the noun may 
become the subject of the verbal complex and behave like a prefix. 
Actually the last sound of the noun, usually a vowel, contracts with 
2/i-prefix. The former may absorb the latter so as to leave no trace 
of the verbal prefix, or like a verbal prefix, the vowel of the noun 
may be modified by lengthening, change of tone, or both. In such 
cases the noun functions as a prefix rather than as an independent 

50 NAVAHO GRAMMAR *. 13.-4. 17. 

'aze'-bfrj (<C 'aze^-yi-be-j) alkaseltzer; medicine-boils 
bi'Stsoh (< 6j- yistsoh) large deer (NT 320:15) 
ti-tse-d (<C tin-teed) ice cream; ice-pounded 

tsi'Cdlo'j (< torn yicdlo-j) bench; wood-it- stands -on-all-fours (NT276: 10) 
'q'q-ria' (< 'a-'tf-n-yi-ni-rfa') he crawled into a hole (NT 22:23) 
bitsd-jnigij (<C bitsd-dji-ni-ni-gij) they (4) cut its paunch (EW 116:3) 
s&djod (< s4-c-djo>l) Old Age lay (NT 128:13) 
x&jQle-lgo 'afe (< x6j6ni-yi-le-l) may it be beneficial, satisfactory 
xa'o-lydiati^ (< xa'o-lyd-yistM^) Things-pulled-out (name) was heard 
(NT 144:16) 

In the last two examples a verb is the nominal subject. 

4.14. Obviously then there are at least three ways of interpreting 
the noun — as an independent word, with primarily nominal signif- 
icance, as an independent word having verbal significance, and as 
a verbal prefix. The distinction may be indicated by writing the 
noun separately when its function is independent, or as a part of the 
verb complex when it combines intimately with the verbal prefixes. 
We shall see that postpositions and adverbial elements may be 
treated the same way (10.30-10.31.). 

4.15. The analysis of the noun will show that verbal forms without 
any modification whatsoever are often nouns (4.17, 5.98.). They may 
have possessive prefixes exactly as have the monosyllabic indepen- 
dent or possessed nouns : 

bibe-'altdi'didloh his buckle: his with-it toward-each-other-something-is- 

bibe-'etsxia, bibe^tskis his with-it something-is-jerked 
cibe-'eldg* my gun: my with-it something-is-caused-to-explode 

4.16. The nominalizing suffixes -v "the particular one which" and 
-* "the one that" are free and may be suffixed to any form — verb or 
particle — to form a noun. Since many nouns, some even mono- 
syllabic, end in -i, -r, or -i, such forms must have a verbal derivation 
(5.23-5.30.). A further development of the same idea is the tendency 
of the stem with a low vowel to change to a rising tone ; the resulting 
form lacks the nominalizing suffix which is preserved in the tone 
as in: 

tid-h (Ktiah-i) Lefty, the-one-who-is-left-handed 
'aban, 'abati, 'abcmi buckskin, soft worked hide 

4.17. In these cases there is little modification of the verb to form 
a noun. On the other hand, certain nouns are verbal forms in every 
respect. They do not take the possessive prefix, but differences in 
person are indicated by conjugation, as in do* yic'vnv "my mother- 
in-law; the-particular-one-whom-I-do-not-see" (man-speaking); but 
do* yo-'i'ni' "his mother-in-law; the-particular-one-he-does-not- 
see;" 'actiohi "my weaving; something-I-am- weaving," but 'atlohi 

4.17.-4.23. THE WORD 51 

"her weaving; something-she-is- weaving." Consequently nouns can- 
not be understood and properly modified without conjugation. 

4.18. Although many ideas which in English are adjectives are 
expressed in Navaho by static verbs, nevertheless a class of verbs 
may properly be called adjectives (9.). They are absolute in form; 
they stand immediately before the verb complex, and are therefore 
written as independent. Although not conjugated some of these 
adjectives have a verbal characteristic which also distinguishes 
postpositions — they have static and progressive forms : 

'acte' (stat.) calm, soothing, tranquil, composed 

'ae£6- (prog.) changing to calm, tranquil, composed; quieting down 

xaete* (stat.) normal, regular, usual, orderly, neat, ready 

xa&tfr (prog.) changing (from out of order) to normal, usual, orderly 

*adt' (stat.) wellbred, having breeding 

'adi (prog.) becoming worthy, deserving, honorable 

4.19. Comparable with this class of words is -ye- J a static verb in 
the form xo-ye ,y "weakening, futile, feeble," but ye-' is absolute or an 
adjective in bil ye,'* 'dxo'la- "he was intimidated; with-him futility 
was-made-thus. ' ' 

4.20. Numerals seem to belong to this class of word. They, like 
nouns and postpositions, may contract with stem prefixes: df'sh}, 
df-'skq, (< df ,y -yiskq,) "four nights." In the following noun the 
numeral is compounded^with the noun and the possessive-nominal- 
izing frame bi-. . .-i* : bila'tfi-'v (< bila'-td-'-v) "fork; the-particular- 
one- which-is-three-f ingered. ' ' 

4.21. Interestingly enough, the nominal stem may be conjugated. 
A prefix conjugation of a passive static verb is used with a stem 
identical with the noun (10.108.) : 

. . . yiltdah he has a hat like . . . , he is hatted like . . . 
cac yinistsi-' I have a head like a bear 

n&icdja-'' yilke-H owl claw; the-one-that-has-feet-like-an-owl (plant 

4.22. The postposition, an important element, has been frequently 
mentioned as related to noun and verb. Some postpositions resemble 
verbs in having static and progressive forms : 

W-' (< hi-i-') (stat.) completely within it 
bi*h (< bi-i'h) (prog.) into it; moving into it 
M-ta? (stat.) between them 
bi-tah (prog.) among them 

4.23. Some elements (stems) with forms identical with the post- 
positions are conjugated: 

'anictah I am among, in the midst of 
y atah lie is in the midst of 

y ana* Uad da'ani'tah we are now in the midst of war; these enemies now 

5 Beicbard 

52 NAVAH0 GRAMMAR 4.23-4.27. 

Compare bvnicyah "I am able to do it, I measure up to it" and 
bvyah "he is able to do it, he measures up to it, it is proportionate to 
it" with the more frequently used ciyah "alongside me" and bvyah 
"alongside him, it fits, it is enough." However, these two postposi- 
tions are the only ones I have found to be conjugated as stems. 

4.24. Although it is convenient to speak of postpositions, actually 
they are not sharply differentiated from adjectives with independent 
forms or particles. Comparable with ye*' is tah, an element referring 
to time. That this is an independent form is exemplified by the 
negative, tah do* nndxdka'h-dah "still they are not returning;" and 
tah da m U% "later perhaps;" tah nfp 9 "time had passed," and other 

Suffixes may be used with tah, in which respect it behaves like an 
adverb: tah-a*' (< tah-e*') "wait; later-future" tah-cq' "how about 
waiting, staying?" (WE). 

In the form 'dtcth td* kwe'e "wait right here" the analysis seems to 
be 'a-there remote (demonstrative adverb here used of time) and 
tah "time passes, there is an interval." 'd-tah-i-go "in a little while" 
shows tah with prefixed 'a-remote time and suffixed -i "that which" 
and -go the subordinating element, literally "future-time-that- 

Other examples of varied forms are : 

4.25. to' xa\* 'e-lyodigi "he merely ran to the edge; the-one-who- 

dariiltia^go* in several directions (they went off) {-Uq,' "radiating 

-led-' "on" in words like naxokd-' dine "earth people" is verbal 
because the compound prefix naxo- is conjugated (10.116.). Compare 
also xo'tah "village, town; place-where-they-are-amongst;" #o-place 
is a verbal prefix. 

-dq* 3 is an enclitic which usually has temporal significance. Kasdq,-' 
and fta sidd*' (NT 44:27) are said to have the same meaning; the 
second form seems to be verbal (si-pf.). Both should be compared 
with 'vdq*' (< 'a-beyond-s/i-pf.) "at that time" and with td&e-dq,-' 
(< fc#-out-Vbeyond-[na-]) "doorway, entrance, yard." The spacial 
significance of -da*' is not clear in the last example. 

4.26. A postposition may be suffixed to a noun : 

td-ta" between the waters 

xoyan-di at home 

k\-h (< kin-i'h) into town 

4.27. A postposition may be suffixed to a possessive pronoun 
which serves as the object of the postposition: 

4.27.-4.30. the WORD 58 

bi-tei* toward him, in his direction 
M-yd through it 
bi-kd'* on it 

4.28. A postposition may be suffixed to a locative (adverbial) 
element : 

'a'-di at a nearby place 

y d--di at a remote place 

ko-di here, at a place near speaker 

kwi- (<ko-i-) here, in this general vicinity 

A postposition may be suffixed to an interrogative or an inter- 
rogative demonstrative element (11.87.): 

xa-di where, at what place (general) 

xcf-di where, wherever (near second person) 

xd*-di where, wherever (remote) 

4.28a. Compounds of the type described in 4.27. are written in this 
work as "words," that is, they are separated from the verbal 

4.29. Just as a noun may become so closely related to the verb as 
to merge with the verbal prefixes, so postpositions or elements 
identical in form may, as prefixes, become a part of the verb com- 
plex. The postposition itself may become a prefix. The element to,' 
"series, alternation of forms" is related to -ta* "between ;" both these 
elements are doubtless related to -tah "do in series," a stem from 
which many verbal forms are derived, for instance, "count, read, 
practice" (12.59.). ta y seems to be a prefix in ta 9 de*ljah "necklace of 
different sized beads strung alternately," and in ta'de'ljahi "necklace 
with curved (bear claw) pendant." It may also be interpreted as an 
adjective (cp. 4.18.). 

4.30. The postposition with its prefixed object may become a part 
of the verb complex : 

bitefcdh (<C bita~yi-c6h) I am moving amongst them 
^aydVi'l filtered liquid; through-something-there- was-floating 
btdtif* xani* 1 be-zniyaz his (4) face was striped with its blood; its-blood- 
aforementioned his (4)-face with-it-was-thrown-on (from container) 
(EW 116:3) 
'aya'fa'h (^aya-yi-ta^h) round obj. is being taken away by force 
bLUe*jditlah he(4) was numb on account of it 

In compounds of this kind the postposition or postpositional 
complex is written as a part of the verb complex. If the phonetic 
setting allows, the postpositional complex may remain independent, 
since it does not contract with aspective prefixes. Therefore it does 
not matter if it is written separately or connected with the verb : biUi 
xatd-li or biKixatd'li "the one sung over, the one for whom a chant 
is performed;" bikd-' 'addni or bikd-'dddni "table; that-(from)-on- 

54 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 4.30.-4.35. 

which-something-is-eaten;" but the parts of the following do not 
exist independently in these forms: biKe'ectcl "picture, writing, 
design ; over-it-something-has-been-caused-to-press ;" and biUi- 
'te*sdiz "warpbeam; that-over- which-there-has-been-twisting-by- 

4.31. When a nominalizing suffix forms a descriptive noun that 
includes a postposition, the possessive and the suffix become a frame 
for the portion of the word that intervenes ; the meaning is of the 
whole, even if the compound is made up of different "words;" be- 
'vltcfi "dye, red dye; that-by-means-of-which-something-is-red- 
dened;" dine bibe^rltci'i "vegetable dye; Navaho its-dye." 

4.32. Since postpositions may be suffixed to verbs as well as to 
nouns and pronouns, and since they may be freely combined with 
adverbial (locative) elements, they are actually enclitics. c{' "pos- 
sibly, perhaps, it may be, it is a question whether. . . " may be a 
word, but it often seems to have no independent existence and may 
also be classed as an enclitic. In ta % 'ei 'qfi-ci'znvzv' "that must have 
been the one she(4) thought" (EW 90:17) the subject is really 
'ei'dffxf* "that which must have happened" because -z- (< dji-4 
subj.) cannot be an initial, -cf' in this setting is comparable with be* 
in the example be'zniyaz "it was striped with it (blood)" (4.30.). 

4.33. Postpositions sometimes have the function of nouns: 

6i-ne* his back, behind him 

bi-ka-' on it, its top side, it is on the record, it is in the book, in the 

newspaper, in print; on the earth, on the body 
bi-kd' do- credit it; on-the-record may-it-be 
fa- bikd-' he is an easy mark, a sucker; it-is-absolutely on-it 

4.34. Although the relation between noun, pronoun, postposition, 
verbal prefix, and verb is close, and in cases overlaps so that the 
character of the word cannot be undeviatingly determined, and 
although the separation between words can be but arbitrary, the 
language furnishes an approximate test of the word. One way of 
asking a question is to suffix -c (< -cq') or -ic to the first word of a 
sentence. It is suffixed to fa- "just, really, absolutely" and to f6' 
"just, merely, no more than." Even though these short words often 
seem to be prefixes with no or little independence, the test of -c 
interrogative shows that they are words. 

4.35. Just as the nominalizing suffixes -i> -r, and ~i include the 
complete meaning of the verb with prefixes or postpositional con- 
struction, so frames consisting of prefix and suffix such as the 
negative do* . . .-dah "not . . .," fa- do- . . .-i "don't be the one 
to . . .," and others, qualify the words between them and indicate 
their close relationship. The combination of do* and -dah has several 

4.35.-4.36. THE word 55 

values: when it is a word, do'dah means "no, never;" when it occurs 
rn-at in an interrogative sentence do % may appear as dox, showing 
that it is a word ; when it is the first element of a frame, therefore, 
it is written independently. There may be a single word or several 
between the elements of a frame, and they are written according to 
the system already described. The last element of the frame, how- 
ever, -dah or -£, for instance, is not a free, but a bound form and it is 
suffixed to the last element of the complex it joins; do* yd 9 die* -dah 
"it is not good, it is bad, evil," do* la' xo-dza*-dah "it is by no means 
finished ; one-thing-has-not-happened." 

4.36. To summarize, there is a base or radical, hereafter called 
the stem, which may be nominal, verbal or postpositional in 
character — its primary function seems to be verbal. 

A radical which is ostensibly nominal may be conjugated like a 

Verbal complexes may be used as nouns with no modification 

Nominalizing suffixes may be used with any stem, adverbial 
element, or interrogative, that is, with any "part of speech," to 
form a noun. 

Postpositional or enclitic elements are closely related to verbs: 
They may be static or progressive. Verb stems and postpositions 
sometimes have the same forms which may be conjugated. Generally 
in such cases progressive-continuative stems have the progressive 
form of the postposition, perfective stems have the static form. 
Postpositions affixed to nouns, pronouns, or adverbial elements 
often have verbal meaning. 

A class of independent words may be designated as adjectives if 
defined according to meaning, but since they qualify the verb, they 
should probably be called adverbs. They differ from verbs mainly 
in not being conjugated; some have progressive and static forms. 

Formally noun, pronoun, interrogative and adverbial elements 
are in the same class insofar as they are related to the postposition — 
the postposition may be suffixed to any of them and the result is the 
same kind of complex. The noun, pronoun, adverbial element, with 
or without a postposition or enclitic, may become a verbal prefix. 

The utterance may be anything from a monosyllable, consisting 
of two sounds (usually consonant-vowel) to a complicated "sen- 
tence," composed of all parts of speech combined in complex ways. 

After this long discussion the question still remains as to what the 
parts of speech are. It is convenient to classify nouns, verbs, post- 
positions, and enclitics or particles, but I conclude that theoretically 
all are in a single class. The evidence that the elements are essen- 
tially verbal has much weight. 

6-5.114. THE NOUN 

5-5.2. Possession 

5. Possession is a significant part of the Navaho noun, since many 
monosyllabic, that is, basic nouns change their phonetic form with 
the possessive prefixes. Such monosyllabic nouns, seldom used with- 
out a possessive, form one large class. Two types of possession are 
distinguished. Inalienable possession is indicated by prefixing a 
possessive pronoun (6.16.). Such nouns are primarily body parts and 
kinship terms. 

5.1. Alienable possession is indicated by prefixing the possessive 
pronoun to the indefinite form of the noun: 'atd 9 "someone's wing, 
wing belonging to something," ce'efa* (< cVata?) "my wing, the wing 
that I use." There is reason to conclude that the forms of indefinite 
possession are nominal forms of the verb, that is, participles. This 
means that a stem like -fo' is interpreted as "it is winged," and 
J a-(a* "something is winged." If this interpretation is correct the 
relation between 'a-indefinite pronominal prefix, subject, object, or 
agent, and 'a-possessive is very close, if indeed they are not identical. 
The phonetic change from ci'afa' to ce'efa' is a common one; 
i-a> e'e in many settings, and the rule holds for all possessive pro- 
nouns except xo-his, her(4), because their vowel is i — ci-my, m-your, 
bi-, yi-his, her, its; nixi-, nxi-ouv, your (dual). There is, however, no 
way of explaining xo-a > xwe'e- for fourth person alienable poss- 
ession on this basis. 

If, however, the stem with indefinite possessive 'a- be regarded as 
a participle, the interpretation xo-e m 'a-> xwe'e- is comparable, -e* is 
a postposition meaning "with instrumental;" xo-e' > ocwe' "with 
him(4), and -e* is often shortened to -e- in this position. The verbal 
interpretation is substantiated by analogy with xwe* 'idin, often 
xwe'edin "he (4)has none; with-him(4) there-is-none," and anvc x$4 
"he(4) has some; with-him(4) there-are." Thus the alienable pos- 
sessive would mean literally "with . . . something is . . .ed," or more 
specifically xwe'efd' "with him(4) something is winged," and all 
phonetic changes would be accounted for. Other examples of alien- 
able and inalienable possession with indefinite pronouns or fourth 
person possessives are: 'a-zis "pouch, sack, flexible container;" 
xwe'ezis "his(4) sack, pouch;" 'alt%' "bow;" xwe'elti* "his(4) bow;" 
*awd-\ 'aywt' "baby;" xwe'ewe-' "his(4) baby." 





5.2. The phonetic stem changes discussed below are based upon 
these principles of possession ; they are the same for alienable and 
inalienable possession. For convenience both types will be referred 
to as nominal prefixing, the verbal significance suggested above 
being theoretical, probably historical. 

5.3-5.19. Monosyllabic Nouns 

5.3. The simplest form of the noun is monosyllabic; many such 
nouns are related to verb stems. It is impossible to predict which of 
the stems may be closest in form, but the static or perfective 
corresponds most frequently. Among the examples of 5.4. only two 
have a form other than static or perfective, six have a form common 
to the perfective and some other aspect (see 5.6-5.7. for the method 
of listing nouns with phonetic stem changes). 



HI that which comes free, twig, 

branch, fuzz, leaf 
tqj a flip, peck 
td {•to') water 
yas, zob snow 

-yol breath 

Uid hump, ridge, prominence 

xi*l (-y6*l) load, pack 

xoc (-yoc) thorn, cactus, splinter 

sdi (-z&i) sand, gravel, what has 

crumbled, slid 
sd'* abandoned place, evidence of 

previous occupation 
sq) old age 
sin (-yi-n) song 

tfy bog 

ci-^ (-ji-*) saliva, foam 

djd-d leg 

djddi antelope 

tci'l falling snow, falling cotton of 

cottonwood, what flutters in the 

lid smoke 
dle-c white clay 
ti&' night 
tioh grass 

Verb stem 
diHl (stat.) it has long soft hairs 

-tqj (pf.) flip, peck 

di-to' (stat., pf.) it is watery 

-zo8 (prog., mom., pf.) sprinkle in a 
line, strew powdery material 

-yol (pf.) sob, weep 

-Uid (pf.) be humped, ridged 

-yi-ly -l-xe-l (prog.) move load, load 

-yoc (prog. , mom. , pf . ) mass be- 
comes thorny 

-sdi- (pres., pf.) pulverize, granu- 

-5d*' (pf .) be disturbed at someone's 

-8$ (pf.) grow mature 

-yin (stat.) be holy, -sin (pres., inc., 
pf.) bless 

-tig (stat.) be boggy 

•j^ (pf.) spit 

di-djd-d (stat.) be fleet 

-tci'l (pf.) snow falls, it is snowing 

•lid (pres., pf.) cause fire to smoke 
-dle-c (pres.) smear, rub clay on 
-tU''' (inc., pf.) it is night 
di-tioh (stat., pf.) be grasslike, spiny, 

5.5. Many monosyllabic nouns are independent: 9 6- 9 "clothes, 
shirt, garment;" bqrh "border, edge, rim;" kg' "fire;" Hal "notch. 




inner angle;" Uos "cloud;" JSq-j "body odor;" nil "ax, stone head;" 
ny** "storage pit, cache;" gic "cane." 

5.6. These nouns and others, some of which do not often appear as 
unpossessed forms, have the same phonetic structure in independent 
and possessed forms : -da' "man's sister's son;" -da %y "lip, bill, beak;" 
-de*' "horn, antler, spoon;" -doh "muscle; -fa-' "father;" -tiah 
"pocket, crevice, fold;" -nv\ -nj,-' "face;" -god "knee, stump;" -kq? 
"male, husband;" -Jfce*' "foot, moccasin, shoe." 

6.7. Nouns which occur seldom, if ever, as unpossessed forms are 
written with a hyphen preceding the stem, as -de-' "horn, antler" — 
'adc' "someone's horn, spoon," is either a possessed or participial 

5.8. Prefixing causes a phonetic change in some nominal stems; 
generally the possessed form is more like the verbal stem than the 
independent form. As we shall see, some changes affect consonants, 
some affect vowels, some affect both. 

5.9. The initial surd of an independent noun becomes voiced when 
the noun has a position other than initial : 

Independent noun Prefixed form 

'a-yS-l someone's pack, load 

bi-yoc its thorn, his cactus 
\i-za-d someone's speech 

bi-zdi its sand 

bi-zq-s his wart 

bi-zi-l its steam 

bi-ztf his star, its star 

'o-j^'* someone's saliva 

bi-le-j its soil, his soil 

bi-lvj his urine 

bi-lj-' his horse, pet 

5,10. The final surd of an independent form may be voiced in a 
compound form. This change may occur in connection with the 
voiced initial or the lengthened vowel; all three changes may be 
simultaneous (cp. 5.9, 5.13-5.16.): 


pack, loud 


thorn, cactus 


speech, langu; 










saliva, foam 


dust, soil, dirt 




horse, pet 

Independent form 

Prefixed form 



flint, metal, knife 

load, pack 



his flint, knife, metal 
its soot 
his load 
his belt 




fire-making apparatus 
rope, cord, string 

J a-dj6'j 



someone's vagina 
his firedrill 
its cord, string, rope 




5.11. The long vowel of some nouns of the type CV-' becomes short 
in possessed forms : 

Independent form 

ya-* louse 

yo^ bead, necklace 

#a-' arrow 

Possessed form 

'a-ya' someone's louse 
bi-yo' his necklace 
bi-Ua? his arrow, weapon 

5.12. Some nouns of the same type have two compounding forms : 

'daa*' jar, pot, dish 
tSa-* basket, bowl 

be'esa-' her jar; t6 y d8a > water jar 

bi-tsa>'\ bi-t4a > his bowl, basket 

5.13. The vowel of a nominal stem is sometimes lengthened with 
the possessive prefix. Some nouns of this sort have two possessed or 
compound forms, one with the short vowel, one with the lengthened 
vowel. One informant (AB) differentiates the two forms in meaning; 
the unmodified stem with prefixed possessive denotes simple pos- 
session. If the vowel is long and the final consonant voiced, the form 
means possessed as a part of a whole, functioning in a particular 
way." It is doubtful whether most speakers today, especially the 
younger ones, make this differentiation : 

Independent noun 

Possessed noun in relation to the 

HI twig, branch, that which is bVi'l its branch, foliage 

sis belt bi-zi'Z his belt 

5.14. The following illustrate merely the contrast between voice- 
less and voiced final consonants, and vowel quantity: 

Independent noun 

ttd'l rope, string, lariat 

form non-functional 

'aya-sis-tld-l rope of An- 
gora wool 
tsi-ttd-l hairstring 
dja--tl6'l earstring 

Compound form 

''aza'-ttd-l rein, mouth- 



-tcei maternal grand- 
father, grandchild 

bi-tcei his maternal 
grandfather, grand- 



biM-tid-l hobble, shoe- 
string; its-foot-string 

cd bi-ttd'l sunray; sun 
its rope 

bi-tsi'-tid'l his hair- 

tcoc-ttd-l cinch, sur- 
cingle; belly -rope 

bi-tcei- his maternal 
grandfather, grand - 
child in relation to 




5.15. Some stems for which these differentiations are made have 
n as a final consonant : 

Independent noun 

form non-functional 





his song 1 
its stick 

tatn bone 

tcin dirt, filth 

tcxin expended body 

substance subject to 


M-tSin his bone 

Compound form 

bi-yi*n his, its song re- 
lated to a song-group 

bi-tsi'Ti its handle, 

'alta-tai^n arrowshaft, 

bi-tsz-n his bone, part of 

bidjct'-tSi-n bone in 
mastoid region, its- 

bi-tci-n body filth 

bi-tcxi"n his body sub- 
stance subject to sor- 

5.16. If the stem vowel is nasalized and the final consonant is a 
glottal stop, the simple possessed form is unchanged, in the com- 
pounded form related to the whole the nasalization becomes n and 
the glottal stop is lost; this is a process related to one occurring 
with perfective stems : 

Independent noun 

dd'dtq^ cornhusk, cig- 
arette paper 

tcq'* human excre- 
ment (vulgar) 
t6i'yif food (gen.) 

xosti' man, husband 
'oadzfy woman, wife 

form non-functional 

'ate£*' base 

bitcq^ his excrement 


his prayerstick 
her husband 

be'esdty his wife 

form functional 

da'dfa-n cornhusk, fod- 
' dlatsi'Ti someone's 

wrist ; someone's- 

y ak6't8i'fi someone's 

ankle ; someone's- 

''atca'Ti manure (polite 

t&i'yd'fi food ready to 

Me-td'n prayerstick 
baxasti'n her husband 

in relation to her 
btfesdzd-n his wife in 

relation to him 

The following verbal forms should be compared with the stem 
changes just given; 'add sil4 "webbeam; in-front-of-something-long- 
obj.-lies;" 'add sitd-n "upper loompole;" 'dh sitd'n "lower loom- 

1 West of Ream's Canyon Main is commonly used for either meaning of 
"his song;" at Ganado it is considered ungrammatical, "wrong." 

5.17.-5.20. THE NOTTN 


5.17. A few nouns of type C^ change to type CV in possessed 

Independent noun Possessed form 

t6 water bi-to' its water, spring 

ta6 stone, rock bi-tae* its stone, rock 

5.18. Some nouns require the possessive with a high tone, a 
remnant of an older n-element, either a nasalized vowel or n : 



-Uify' rib 



-ji* name 


older brother 

-ji uttered breath 


~nf mind 

-tci*' nose 


-n{^ inside of nostril 

-tcx^ muzzle 

-Mai 9 

mother's older sister 

-la* finger, hand 


protuberance, eminence 

-tiah angle, corner, side of face 

5.19. The nouns are so arranged in the dictionary and word lists 
that the exceptions may be easily noted. If no possessive form is 
given in parentheses after the word, the possessive is regular, that is, 
there is no change. Wherever an exception occurs, the possessive 
form is in parentheses immediately following the noun, for example, 
W' (-V *) "bead;" sis (-zvz) "belt;" to (-to 7 ) "water." If the noun 
demands a high tone of the prefix it is written -stem, for example, 
-la? "finger, hand," 'dW "someone' sfinger, hand," cila' "my finger, 
hand," etc. 

5.20-5.113. Compounding 

5.20. The discussion of monosyllabic nouns includes changes in 
form and meaning due to prefixing. Nouns may be the result of 
composition of two or more apparently nominal stems. Since one 
stem follows another, there may be phonetic changes of the stem 
final. The final glottal stop of a stem is often lost in a compound: 


Compound noun 


someone's tooth 

'a-yo'-ctiah inside of someone's 


someone's head, hair 

'a-tei-ya' mane 

someone's tongue 

'a-tso'l&tah tip of someone's tongue 
*a-tta--tsi *n arrowshaf t 


someone's outer ear 

Ma--b6*c iron weapon point 
Ua'-yi'l quiver 
'adja -'ti-j earwax 
dja'-tid'l earstring of beads 

62 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 5 ^l.-5.24. 

5.21. Nouns of more than one syllable are the result of compound- 
ing which is not limited to nominal stems, but may include other 
elements. A noun may be composed of a base with a suffix, a process 
which gives rise to many bisyllabic nouns. A noun may be a verb 
form, in which case it is analyzed as a verb complex — stem with 
prefixes; it may or may not have a nominalizing suffix. A large 
series of nominal prefixes, related to, but not identical with the 
monosyllabic stems, combine with nominal or verbal stems to form 
compound nouns. Whether the nouns are considered as nominal or 
verbal forms, affixes must be determined, and since it is good 
practice to start the analysis of the Navaho word from the end — 
the stem is final or near-final— the suffixes are presented first. Some 
of these suffixes sometimes seem to be bases, but they are included 
here because the examples are too few to make the category 

5.22-5.37. Nominal Suffixes 

5.22. -e- concerning, customs, manner, way: 

M6-c Hail Chant; conceming-hail 

t6-e* Water Chant; concerning-water 

na'kai-e' Mexican ways, customs; Mexican-concerning 

bektgd-na-e* American (white) ways 

5.23. -v the particular one. This suffix is free; it may be added to 

any Navaho word to indicate "the particular one that " It is 

sometimes suffixed to a stem, becoming an inseparable part of the 
bisyllabic noun : 

*&-di- group of females 

mq'i' ma y i • coyote 

tqj-i- turkey; the-particular-one-that-pecks 

gd-g-i- crow • 

kq'-i* group of males 

y6H- god, gods 

tsa'-i- group of mature females, female sex 

tSi J -i* flea 

tM-i* small animal, Mexican hairless dog (referring to breed) 

tcah-i- crybaby, the-particular-one-that-cries 

•tcei' maternal grandfather and daughter's child in relation to each 

other (cp. 5.14.): 
ttiah-i- Man-with-a-hat (personal name of first man who wore a hat) 
do'tfij-i- turquoise; the-particular-one-that-is-blue 

5.24. If the stem ends in a vowel, the suffix ~v may be shortened, 
combining with the vowel to form a short vowel cluster that makes 
it seem to be a part of the stem : 

5.24.-5.30. THE noun 63 

*k&i spouses, wives, husbands 
-Uei clan relatives, clan relationship 

xastoi old man, men, the wise old men, those in authority 
-tcei maternal grandfather, daughter's child (used in contrast with -tcei* 
when relationship to each other is not indicated) 

5.25. -i the one that is. . . , the one who. . . , the place where .... 
This is also a free suffix, used exactly as is -i m ; it is less particular in 
its meaning : 

'dh-i fog, mist 

'dcf-i older sister 

-dtf-i man's mother's brother, man's sister's son older than speaker 

-de'j-i younger sister 

dine'-i (< dine*-i) tribe, group, people 

ltod-i sheep with coarse curly hair 

-tsil-i younger brother 

-j&& father 

-ttffi woman's daughter 

na'azis-i pocket gopher 

di'tcil-i abalone; the-one-that-is-iridescent 

5.26. If the stem ends in a low vowel, -i may combine with it to 
form a short vowel cluster with rising tone. The suffix thus becomes 
a part of the stem : 

-nai older brother r 

H-ndi livelihood 

tcdi (< tcah-i), tcayi crybaby (FH) 

5.27. The suffix -i may be incorporated into the stem, retaining 
its identity in the length and tone of the resulting vowel : 

tid'h (<! tlah-i) Lefty, the -one -who -is-left -handed (note that in tcdi "cry- 
baby" h was lost) 
J abaii, 'a6dn, 'abani dressed hide, skin 
gifiy gin, gini prairie hawk 
xasti'n gd"n> ga-ni, ga'tl Mr. Arm (personal name) 

5.28. Two nominalizing suffixes may be used in the same com- 
pound, that is, two nominalized forms may be compounded. Ex- 
amples of this kind illustrate how intimate the suffixes become as a 
part of the complex they create : 

na J azi8-l-to'-i Gopher Spring 
na'acd'-i'-to'-i Reptile Spring 
tsid-i' -to' -i Bird Spring 

5.29. -igi the very one who, the very one that, the place where: 

belasd-na bitse^ x6l6n-igi pear, the-apple-that-has-a-tail 
bijfr' x6l6n-igi beer, the-one-that-has-foam 

5.30. -igi' 9 -idi* the more remote one, the separated one which, 
who. This suffix is probably not carefully differentiated from -igi 

64 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 5.30.-5.34. 

by the ordinary Navaho speaker. Both are used to form a substan- 
tive clause, as well as to denote nominal specification. Like other 
nominal suffixes, -igv is free and may be affixed to any word: 

tsi-tid-l-igi- old-fashioned navy blue hairstring; the-one-that-is-a-hair- 

tsd'dszi' ntwh-igi- Yucca glauca; the-yucca-that-is-large 
xata r l-igi- that which he sings 
yiihzin-igi* that which he wants 

5.31. -o*, -yd' dear, beloved; 

biJtis-6* his beloved brothers 
ciy&-y6* my dear husband 
bd'dcxe'-yd' my dear brothers-in-law 

5.32. -ni 9 deceased, past, the late . . . , the one who used to be 
(cp. 11.36.): 

bij&i-nV his late father 

gici'-ni* the late Cane (User); the-particular-one-who- (had) -cane- 

t8€k'tsoh6-ni > the late Big Belly (NT 368:27) 

xastin na^ta^ni^-nV Old Man Chief deceased; mister the-particular-one- 
who-was-chief-deceased (NT 370:17) 

bVi'^ lUciH-ni* the late Red Coat; the-one-whose-coat-was-red-deceased 
(NT 370:27) 

nigola'8-nV the late Nicholas (NT 372:1) * 

ncfkai sani-ni' the late Old Mexican (personal name) 

5.33. -nv belonging to a place, people of the place. This suffix is 
used in clan names : 

bitah-ni' Folded-arms-people (clan name); place-wheie-it-is-in-its-fold 

(NT 92:13,14) 
mq?i' de-cgij-ni- Coyote Gap people (clan name) 

td dit6i''-ni> Bitter-water-people (NT 92:13) 
tdxd'-ni' People-of-water's-edge-place (clan name) 
to-tsoh-ni- People of -big-water-place (clan name) 
kiya-^d'-ni* People-of-the-masonry-houses (clan name) 
xactlic-ni* People-of-the-mud-place (clan name) 

xonayd'h-ni' People-of-the-place-where-he-walked-about (clan name) 
ndxddld'-ni' people exist at a place 

5.34. -M, -Mi plural of persons: 

*d-k& (< y d-d-k4) wives 

cinai'ki my older brothers 

ts4l-k6 young men, youths (EW 144:24 "young relatives") 

bitsiW-ki (< bitsili-kd) his younger brothers 

t&i-kii girls, daughters (general, not necessarily related) 

tso'-M (< taoi-M) daughter's children 

bila-kii his sisters, her brothers, siblings of the opposite sex 

5.35.-5.36. the noun 65 

5.35. -kfr youth: 

tsel-kq* youth, young man 
t6i-k%- young girl, maiden 

5.35a. -lie*, -He seems to be the nominal suffix for place, compared 
with xo-, the prefix denoting place in verbal forms. It should be 
compared with the verb -fte'd (pf.) in xo*-Ue m d "there is empty 
space." It is debatable whether this is a nominal prefix or suffix, a 
verb, or a postposition: 

'and-fc'e* someone's eye socket; someone's-eye-place 

''at-Ue- in the same dwelling with; reciprocal (pronoun)-place 

Vo2-#e- it's there so let it remain; it has no special place but it will do 

td-Ue* stream bed, channel; water-place 

ni--ke*h-& yucca mask of Night Chant; that-which-is-face-place 

yisd&a-Ue* lair, den; safety-some-place 

kg* ni-Ue'y xoni-Ue fireplace; fire space-in-line 

tsas-tte bed : main-part-peculiar-to-place 

tcdc-tte arroyo, broad -bottomed wash; above-rim-peculiar- to-place 

Compare %e*toh "wristguard, bow guard," and Ue'(d*n "prayer- 
stick, place-feathered," in which #e* seems to be a verbal prefix; 
'allci dadcfatte "terraced gardens; one-above-the-other in-front there- 
are-spaces," in which -Afe seems to be verbal, or a postposition. In 
xaltcv'-Ue (< xo-yi-l-tci') "ground is red, place-reddened-place," and 
xo-tiv-yan "ghost hogan, place-empty-house" #e* is used with xo-. 
It is not unusual to find the same idea expressed more than once in 
Navaho words, and these seem to be verbal forms nominalized by 
-#e. Compare also xo'Ue'd "ruin, empty space, space." From these 
verbal examples I have concluded that -Ate* is the static continuative, 
-tte'd the static perfective verb stem. 

5.36. -c-, the only element of its kind, connects two nouns and 
means that one "belongs to, is peculiar to the other." For example, 
n&i-c-til "nasal mucus," but ne'idil "nosebleed." "ne'ecdil would 
sound far-fetched because blood may be found anywhere but nasal 
mucus belongs especially to the nostrils" (AB). The element is 
relatively free as is illustrated by the elaborate compound, be-'eUe- 
'eltcihi-c-to* "fountain pen ink, liquid for water or oil color" (cp.4.3L). 

It is interesting to compare this element with the possessive. The 
form y <md' y bito? "someone's eye its water" is absurd, for "someone's 
eye" is not something which may freely "own or have" anything. 
Contrast this with the forms : 

*ana~c-to* boric acid, any water of any eye, water-used-for-eye 

* arid-He* -c-to* natural eye water; someone's eye-place-peculiar-to-water 

ti ani*-c-t6 > facial perspiration; someone's-face-peculiar-to- water 

*6lc\ -c-td > nasal mucus; someone Vnose-peculiar-to-water 

*dld-c-t6*j bark of tree 

td-c-to\ kd-c-to* perspiration 

66 NAVAHO GRAMMAK 5.36.-5.39. 

na£o-s-tse* (a < c before ts) tobacco pipe; tobacco-peculiar-to-stone 
'odjd-c-tcoh leg hair; someone's-leg-peculiar-to-eoarse-hair 
'adjfr-s-tsi-n skeletal portion of trunk; thorax-framework 
bi-ni--c-t8i' his cheek; his-face-peculiar-to-flesh (NT 64:1) 

The freedom of -c- is shown twice in the example H-gQ-s-tei'-s-g&j 
"cartilage of his shoulderblade; his-shoulder-peculiar-to-framework- 

5.37. Attention may be called to Hoijer's interpretation of -c- 
(although so far as I know he does not translate it). He says, "There 
is one example of a tri-consonantal cluster of type 3 [having a point 
of syllabic division between the second and third consonant of the 
cluster] differing from the above [final clusters beginning with 
glottal stop and having a second element s, j, I, or h] in form." 2 
Hoijer goes on to cite the example xas-tvns-t&M "Wide Man" (per- 
sonal name), and concludes, "Here the cluster ns ends the syllable." 
On the basis of his own theory of syllabification, I think he should 
divide the word as xas-ti'n-s-til-i and consider -s- (< -c-) syllabic, for 
it is what he calls a "prefinal" prefix in its own right, as explained 
above. To me it is phonetically in the same class as syllabic s or z of 
the third person transitive (3-3) si-perfective. The examples given 
above show, however, that it is distinct from s-perfective (cp. 3.98.). 

5.38-5.70. Nominal Prefixes 

5.38. The nominal prefixes used in compounding nouns or as 
verbal prefixes are closely related to independent nouns. Some are 
shortened nominal stems, lacking the final consonant, as tsi*- (-tsi*') 
"head, head hair;" tso m - (-teo m ') "tongue;" dja'- (-dja-') "outer ear;" 
za,-- (-za m d) "word, speech, language;" dja- (-djd*d) "leg;" le m - (le-j) 
"soil, dust, dirt." 

Others are rarely used independently, although several examples 
show that they may be: di-hfrnV (-de* 9 ) "antlers of the one men- 
tioned." Compare de nneinrlgd' "when the antlers have been put 
back" (NT 322 : 14, 17). In the first example de is independent ; in the 
second, it is doubtful whether de is a word or a prefix. Forms of the 
prefix type may be used with postpositions in which respect they 
are like stems: naya* s^si "One-that-has-a-wart under-the-eye" 
(place name). 

5.39. The nominal prefix often has the form CV. The verbal char- 
acter of the noun is demonstrated by the fact that if the nominal 
prefix with a high tone is followed by another prefix, the latter is 
high because of the inflective prefix (nd~) (10.25, 10.93.). In the list 
of nominal prefixes the independent or final stem is written in 
parentheses : 

2 Hoijer 1945c, p. 25. 

5.40.-5.45. the NOUN 67 

5.40. da- (-M-') rim, edge: 

-dd-gi rim of orifice (g is a glide consonant) ; the-one-that-is-the-rim 

dd-ya* person's beard and mustache; mouth-hair 

•dd-yi* throat ; edge-inside 

~dd-ziz uvula; edge-flap 

-dd-djd'j opening between mouth and nose 

dd-ydtddsi tapering mustache (of animal or person) 

dd-ydndzbqsi One-who-has-a-handlebar-mustache (personal name) 

5.41. dd'd- corn, plant: 

dd'd-tq^ cornhusk, corn leaf, cigarette paper 

d$d-ta*n cornhusks, fodder 

dd'd-kaz cornstalk 

dd'd-Ke cornpatch, cornfield; corn-place 

da d-ydli- rattlepod (plant) 

dd'd tca-n cornsmut; corn-excrement 

dd'd-tSi* pith of corncob 

dd*d-lgai 'akd-n white cornmeal 

5.42. dd'- y da- (cp dd'h "moving in front of" 7.40.) in front, fitted 
in opening : 

'a-dd-dildjoli herbs for sealing prayersticks (cer.): some-bushy-sub- 

dd*~dinizi*ni* door guard; the-particular-one-who-stands-in-front 
dd--diitt&i door guards (as snake, lightning) (cer.) ; house furnishings kept 

near doorway 
dd'-didjah bars across corral opening 
dd'-ditj, dd-Mit{hi wooden door, gate in one piece 
dd'-fostlvn* dam; something-has-been-piled-in-front 
bi-dd'-ne^zld slightly overlapping, just touching (as branches of a shade) 


5.43. td- pertaining to water 

td- y dgi8 washing, cleansing, dipping, bath 
td~bq*hd People-of-water's-edge (clan name) 
td-bq*hgi shore, beach ; place-at-water's-edge 
td-zil sac on internal organ : water-collects 
td-tci* sweathouse 

5.44. ib- (< td-w&ter-i'h into) deep water, in deep water: 

ti'-lj-* water horse (myth.) 

tfr-xo'lted'di* water monster (myth.); the-particular-one-that-grabs-in- 

6.45. n&-> -nd- (-nd*') eye, small seed, grain, essential part: 

'a-nd-diz someone's eyelash; eye-twists (on-itself) 

^a-nd-t&j someone's eyebrow; eye-blackened 

y a-nd-gai someone's cornea; eye-whitened 

'a-nd-Jce* someone's eye socket; eye-place 

'a-nd-Me'Cto' someone's tears ; eye-place-peculiar-to-water 

'a-nd-ziz someone's eyelid; eye-flaps 

'a-nd-tdi'Ti someone's brow ridge ; eye-bone 

6 Reiohard 

68 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 5.45.-5.51. 

J a-nd-ji-n someone's pupil ; eye-black 
'a-nd-tlah corner of someone's eye; eye-corner 

nd-ya- s$-zi One-that-has-wart-under-the-eye (name of Joseph City, 

5.46. nffe- { L nv\ -n^') pertaining to inside of nostril: 

n&i-dil nosebleed 

ni'i-til nasal mucus ; nose-slimy 

n&i-cdja-^ screechowl; nose-peculiar-to-outer-eajr 

-ni^i-ya^ hair of nostrils 

5.47. -gqs- {-ga-n) pertaining to arm: 

-gq'-doh arm muscle 

-gq'-yos shoulder joint 

-gq*-ziz sleeve; arm-flaps 

-gty-stsi-n shoulderblade ; arm-peculiar-to-foundation 

-gq*-8tsi*ttf middle part of shoulderblade; arm-peculiar-to-main-part- 


-gq--lo- i lower arm; arm-appendage 

5.48. M- (-he*') foot, footgear, pertaining to foot: 

hi bi'h dji'nil (dust) he shook into his shoe; shoe into-it he(4)-moved 

pl.-obj. Here hi must be interpreted as an independent noun. 
hi-tal heel of shoe, moccasin ; foot-move-swiftly 
ki-ni'' instep; foot-middle 
ki-kal sole of foot 
ki-ldtah toe ; foot-tip 
ki-ltci moccasin uppers;- foot-red 
ki-'abani buckskin footwear 
-hi-tid-l shoestring 
-hi-ke footprints; foot-place 
•hi-cga-n toenail; foot-peculiar-to-shield 
xa-ki-li-j his(4) foot dust (cer.) (EW 196:244) 
hi nine-zi boots; the-footwear-that-is-long 

5.49. fte-- see 5.35a. 

5.50. -yd- (-ya\ -ya*') pertaining to body hair, fuzz, fur, wool: 

'otze** dd-ydi (< ddydisjin) Sloan's liniment; medicine-blackened- 

mustache (named for picture on box) 
dd-yd-tioai tapering mustache ; mustache-narrow 
dd-yd-ndzbqsi handlebar mustache : the-mustache-that-curves 
dd-yd sika-d mere tuft of beard, small goatee 
isi--yd mane; head-hair 

5.51. -yd- (-yo tJ ) pertaining to teeth: 

^a-yd-tah fold between teeth and lips ; tooth-fold 

bi-yd-cgi-j He-lacks-a-tooth (personal name) : his-tooth-peculiar-to-gap 

^-yd-ckal place where tooth is missing; tooth-notch 

'a-yo-ctlah inside of cheek; tooth-peculiar-to-angle 

5.52.-5.59. THE NOUN 60 

5.52. yd'-, ywi'- smooth, shiny body covering; insect, worm: 

y6'~ne*ct&jdi' cicada (gen.) 
yd'-ldjini black ant 
yd'-ldtci-' ant (gen.); red ant (spec.) 
yd' ait&ili bedbug 

yd- siUidi- worm, caterpillar that humps in moving, measuring worm; 

5.53. za- (cp. -za y "belched gas") in mouth, passingthrough mouth: 

za-'azis packet of garment; mouth-pouch 

za-xodi"yoh suction of gas 

Oza-dzo'l-tiin . . . was punched in the mouth 

5.54. za*- (swd, -za*d) mouth, voice, word, speech, language: 

za--riU herbal medicine; pl-obj.-are-placed-in-mouth 
•za'-bq-h lip; mouth-edge 
za'-lani western mockingbird; words-many 

bi-za'-dil sacred blood, blood of animal ritualistically killed; its-mouth- 
'a-za'-l&tah final meaning of words; speech-tip 

5.55. za-, zd*- pertaining to inside of mouth: 

z&di, zdyi oesophagus; that-which-is-inside-of -mouth 
zd-bq-h 'dFi'h lipstick; mouth-inside-border is-made-thus 
\i-zd'-fVi bridle, bit, rein; that-which-is-strung-inside-mouth 
-zd'-yo-j hard palate; inside-of-mouth-botryoidal 

5.56. -zi- pertaining to neck, throat (outside): 

zi n&yfy 1 surface of chest and neck to lower jaw and ear 

zi ndz'di separate shirt collar; neck-stiff-obj.-projects-in-arc 

5.57. -zfr- (-ze t9 ) breath; part around outside of neck: 

zi- de-tiH necktie; 

zi' (Mdyi'h collar worn in ceremony 
zi- deyini cape 
zi- di'ldoi scarf 

zi' na'zfoH necktie; it-lies-strung-around-neck 
zi' n&ztiH necktie; it-lies-strung-against-neck 

zi- sidoi, zi' de'Sdoi shirt collar; that-part-of-neck-which-is-warm (Cp. 
bizi-* xazli-' "he died; his-breath space-became" NT 368:23) 

5.58. -tsd- main part of: 

-tsd-gah part of body between lower ribs and hips 
-tsd-tiid tendon of Achilles ; main- tendon 
tsd'd&zi* yucca; something-main-fibrous 
tsd-sUe bed ; main-part-peculiar-to-place 

5.59. t&il- % : 

tsil-k^ youth, period from early adolescence to middleage 
tail-tea*'' buzzing beetle 


70 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 5.60.-5.67. 

5.60. tsi'-, -tsi*- (-tsi' 9 ) pertaining to head, hair, or both: 

'a-tai'-yastd'n someone's neck tendon; long-object-lies-under-peculiar - 

'a-te^*-yq^• , someone's brain; head-nerve- tissue 

*a-tsi-~ziz seal]), part of foreigner used in War Ceremony; head-flap 
'a-tsi'-tM-n skull; head -bone 

'*a-t8%--y6ti- top vertebra, atlas; the particular-one-where-head-pivots 
tsi-'tld'l hairstring, hair-cord 

5.61. -tso-- (-tso-') tongue: 

'a-tao'-yaz tongue papillae; tongue-papilliated 
^a-tso^ldtah tip of tongue 

5.62. tM-- foundation, essential part: 

tSi^-tiin skeleton; essential-bone 

tsi'-zia quiver; essential-pouch 

dd'd-tH' pith of corncob; corn-essential-part 

5.63. cd, cq,- {c4*') pertaining to sun: 

cd ndi-n sunstreamer 

cq didi'n sunbeam 

cq-l&tah end of sunbeam ; sun- tip 

cd-da'&'h south; sun-round-obj.-is-starting-to-move 

cd bUtd'l sunray 

5.64. dja-- (-djcr 9 ) outer ear, ear lobe: 

dja*-fini* dock (plant) 
dja*-n4-z mule : ear-long 
dja--cjini Black Ears (dancers) 
Odjci'-kal ... is deaf; . . . -is-ear-covered 

5.65. djd~, dzd- (djd'd) leg: 

-djd-nil fringe of robe; separate-obj.-lie-against-leg 
-dzd-ziz fringe of robe; limber-obj.-lie-against-leg 
djd-I6$'j odor of genitals : leg-acrid 
-dzd-stis shin 
-dzd-tiid leg sinew 

5.66. tea- shade, darkness: 

tca-xa'oh shade 

be* tca-xac'ohi umbrella; that-with-which-place-is-shaded 

tca-xalxe'l, tccfaxalxe-l, tca-xa*lxe*l darkness; shade-dims-place 

6.67. ted- above rim ( ?): 

tca'ol pinyon tree 

tcd-cUe arroyo, deep sharp wash; place- where-arroyo-begins-to-merge- 

tcd~cdjic diaphragm 
tcd-tfoc syphilis (AB) 

5.68.-5.72. THE NOTTN 71 

5.68. Id-, -Id (-la 9 ) digit, finger, hand: 

-ld-ydji small finger 

-Id-tsi'n wrist; hand-attachment (YM 123) 

Id-tsini bracelet (YM 123) 

-la-tsoh thumb ; finger-large 

-Id tsosiiidi index finger; the-seventh-fingcr 

5.69. le- } le-- (le-j) soil, dust, dirt : 

le'-H'rii-l cemetery; soil-in-which-pl. -are-laid 

le'-yV in ground 

te'-s'^n pit-baked bread 

le--ya neyani One-nurtured-under-ground (myth.) 

le'Uoh yellow ocher ; soil-yellow 

le'-tia*'' bowl, earth-bowlshaped 

le*-djin coal; earth -blackened 

le- H-ci-j ho poked it into the ground (NT 22:24) 

le-'aznilg-go- to where pieces of meat were buried (NT 22:28) 

5.70. rfa*- (-tta'') bottom, buttocks: 

tla-~kal skirt; buttocks-covered 

th'-dji J V*' pants; bottom-toward garment 

bi-tla'-dja-'' bias binding, rickrack braid 

5.71-5.113. Composition of Nouns 

5.71. The difficulty of interpreting the Navaho elements, demon- 
strated by the word and nominal affixes, is further shown by noun 
composition. Nouns, verbs, and postpositions overlap and inter- 
change in so many ways that it is impossible to draw a line between 
any two categories. One rule seems to stand out, namely, that a 
nominal stem stands first in a compound, whereas a verbal stem 
usually has at least one prefix ; it may be a noun. There is, however, 
an exception — the verb stem has an initial position with a nominal- 
izing suffix: yol-i "ability, capacity, might;" bal-i "shawl, the-one- 
that-is-curtainlike ;" tioz-i "Angora goat ;" tlog-i "Sia Indian ;" tcahi, 
tcayi, or tc&'h "crybaby." Such forms are doubtless shortened forms 
of the participle with nominalizing suffix, but the class is large 
enough to indicate that a verb stem, like a nominal stem, has some 
capacity for independence. 

5.72. The participial form is very free; it is formed by prefixing 
'a- "some, someone, something" to any of the principal parts of the 
verb. It is nominal as well as verbal: 'atioh "weaving, something 
being woven (pres.)"; 'asiiQ "weaving, something is woven (pf.);" 
'o'fis (<'a-i/i-prog.) "something is roasting (prog.);" 'ates "some- 
thing is frying (inc.) ;" 'azfe "something is roasted, fried (pf.) ;" 'atcah 
"there is crying" (cp. tcah "crying"). 

72 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 5.73.-5.80. 

5.73. The participle may be given a nominal form with a suffix: 
'atioh-i ' 'weaver, the-one-who-weaves-something;" 9 aMah-i "miller, 
the-one- who -grinds-something. ' ' 

5.74. Although the assignment of a word to a verbal or nominal 
category is sometimes arbitrary, it is clear that once a form has been 
nominalized — as a participle, or by a nominalizing suffix — it retains 
the nominal character and thenceforth behaves like a noun in a 
compound or utterance. Moreover, the suffix binds all that precedes 
it into a unit. 

5.75. In the following examples the analysis is the one that seems 
preponderant; others might be possible. 

5.76. A noun may be composed of two nominal stems, the second 
of which cannot be independent ; the resulting form is noun-noun : 

td-zia waterbag, glass jar, bottle 

tsi-dd-' Rock Rim (place name) 

tcoc-ttd-l cinch; belly-rope (cp. 'abati tid-l buckskin or goatskin lariat) 

ld-djic glove; hand-case 

-dd-ya-' person's beard and mustache; edge-body-hair 

dfrl-da-' cranebill (cer.) 

cd-ldtah end of sunbeam ; sun-tip 

5.77. A noun may be composed of more than one stem, either of 
which may be independent : 

dibi dfy* sheep food (plant name) ; sheep corn 
gah tcidi rabbitskin robe ; cottontail robe 
JSa- bfrc (< #a-' bi-c) arrowhead; arrow flint 
tai bq'h Rock Border (place name) 
ts6 ktf yellow ocher ; rock fire 
isi' tid-l (< tai* y tid*l) haircord 

5.78. A noun and a possessed noun may form a compound noun: 

tqji- bi-b6j6'' turkey comb; turkey its-comb 
tainil bi-tai'ti ax handle; ax its-handle 
tUn bi-tta marrow ; bone its-fat 
ty' bi-yfrl saddle; horse its-pack 

5.79. Two or more nouns may combine with a possessed noun to 
form a compound noun; the position of the possessed noun may 
change. Position probably indicates emphasis: 

tai l\~* biyfrl Saddle Rock; rock horse its-load 

tai bini' t6 Cliff-face- water (place name); rock its-face water 

5.80. A noun may result from combining a noun or nominal prefix 
and postposition; 

5.80.-5.86. THE NOTTNT 73 

-dd-yi* throat; edge-within 

yd-'q-c heaven; sky-opposite 

-go-dai (< -god-dai) thigh; knee-up-from 

kin-tah town ; masonry -houses-among 

tsi-ya- cave; rock-underneath 

tsi-ytf canyon; rocks- within 

le'-yi* subsoil, underground; soil-within 

5.81. This process may be carried further, so that another noun 
may be added, the result being a new noun : 

tsd-tah kin (Sanlldefonso); House-among-rocks ; rocks-among masonry- 

tse-na- 16 Senatoa Spring; Water-around-rock 

tsd-Kiz-tdh-i Rock-crevice- water ; that- which-is-rock-crevice- water (NT 

5.82. The noun may be composed of a nominal stem and two post- 
positions : 

tsi-yV-gi Place-in-box-cany on; rocks- within-place. Here the noun 
and postposition is the "noun;" the postposition -gi "in place" is 
added, the entire compound being the place name. 

5.83. The compound noun may be composed of noun-postposition 
and verb : 

tsiya- ni-tci^ Red Cave; rock-under red-paused 

%s6yi* xaydji Small Canyon; rocks- within place-is-small 

xacM'dji na-td-h war captain, army officer; warrior-side he-exerts 

t8&a*lty Rock-ridge-in- water; rock-into-water-ridged 
t86na,'dji-n Bennett Peak; Blackened-around-rock 

5.84. A second verb may be added to the same structure: 

tsdiwdji'n-y&ji Little Bennett Peak; Blackened -around-rock -small 

5.85. In the following, noun-postposition and verb are so inti- 
mately related by the phonetic change of the verb initial that the 
verb cannot be independent : tse-ya-'tindin-i' rock crystal, crystal; 
some -particular-rock -through -which - light - shines - beyond (AB). 
Compare with this an alternant form, tse-yd diriidi'n-v the-particu- 
lar-rock-through-which-light-beams-beyond (YME 22). In both 
forms the compound is framed by tse and -r, the nominalizer. 

5.86. A postposition may be nominalized, or serve as a noun : 

be--di utensil, implement; that-which-is-"withed" ; that-which-is- 

hi-Jcd'* its top; credit; what-is-on-it 
bi-yi* bottom side; its-in-it 

74 NAVAHO GBAMMAE 5.87.-5.91. 

5.87. A postposition with a noun may form a noun : 

bikd^ *ati*n highway; on-it road 

biUi xatd-l patient in ceremony; over-him there- was-singing 

'aycf-tSi-n someone's lower jaw; something-under-attached-bone 

6.88. Some nouns result from a compound of noun and verb stem, 
as if the noun were the subject of the verbal complex; they are 
schematized as noun-verb stem : 

ma'i'-tsoh wolf; coyote-large 

tsd-gi'j mountain pass ; rock-gap 

-djd-dl-l (< dj&*d-dH) thigh; leg-big 

tcici-nd-z Chiracahua; scoundrel-tall 

tco*~yin menstruation; genitals-dangerous 

le*~jin coal; soil-black 

tloh-tcin onion; grass-odorous 

kin-ldni Flagstaff, Arizona ; masonry-houses-many 

5.89. Nouns or nominal prefixes may be compounded with a verb 
stem, which may have a form unlike any of the principal parts: 
Va-n "hole" (from -'# [stat.] "be open"); -td-rt instead of ~t4 "long 
slender obj. lies;" -ywn instead of -yq, "eat;" -djvn instead of -djin 
"be blackened;" -gvj instead of -gij "be forked, have a gap." Such 
forms seem to be analogous to the possessed noun with lengthened 
vowel to show a more intimate relation than does the stem with 
short vowel — for example, Uin "bone" and bi-Ui-n "its bone as part 
of skeleton" (cp. 5.13-5.16.): 

'd4d-gi*j crotch between fingers; someone's-finger-gapped 

ts6-gi-j Rock Gap (place name) 

dzil-ji-n Black Mountain (cp. dziljvn and dzil lijin "the mountain is 

'an&-ji"n pupil and iris; eye-black 
tti-yd-n prepared food, food ready to eat (cp. t6i*y4 "food" [gen.]) 

5.90. The following noun is composed of noun verb-noun : 

16 ltc4'6-ko'h Red-water-canyon (place name) ; water the-red-one-canyon 
(NT 348:7) 

6.91. Many nouns are formed by combining a noun and an 
independent verb : 

'abq'h fitV border string of blanket on loom; some-border it-is-strung-up 

*ano* xo'dzoh boundary line; stranger place-is-marked 

'aze*' ditci*' chili, pepper; medicine it-is-bitter 

bidd*' xcfazti* Rim-strung-out, Grand Canyon 

mq'i- Usoh yellow fox; coyote is-yellow 

dc ndstSa^ (< dfe*' ndatia*') ram; horn curved-bowllike) 

na'dfr'* 'datfrh crackerjack; corn it-is-roasted 

kin ya- J d tower; masonry from-underneath-projects (the postposition 

-ya* has become a verbal prefix) 
y i-nd yd'dc$ good health; life it-is-good 
lain dirli' bullroarer; stick it-moans 

5.92.-5.98. THE N0TXN 75 

5.92. A noun may consist of a noun and several verb stems: 

tsi-tci'-ta* Red-rock-shelter (place name); rock-red-shelters 

5.93. A noun and verb with nominalizer may form a noun: 

"anv" bildjol-i powderpuff ; face-that- which-is-moved-fluffy-against-it 
'dsa*' nimaz-i round utensil, receptacle ; pot the-one-which-is-spherieal 
V*' na-tsg-d-i' sweater ; garment the-particular-one-that-stretches-around- 

yo-' 'aydll sleighbell; bead the-one-that-rattles 
>>#■' 'asUidi camel; the-one-whose-back-is-humped 
tsi'istH paper bread; something -that-is-baked-against-stone 
t6il ncfattyi- grape, raisin; the-particiilar-plant-that-mtertwines-here- 

and -there 
tdil xa-€aH- marshhawk; plants the-particular-one-that-flies up-out-of 
t&il litsohigi- orange; plant the-one-that-is-yellow 

5.94. Two nouns may be combined with a verb and a nominalizing 
suffix to form another noun : 

belaad-na bitse^ xdlonigi- pear; apple the-one-that-has-a-tail 

5.95. A noun, possessive with postposition and verb — practically 

a sentence — may be a noun either with or without a nominalizing 
suffix : 

isi bi*' de-sgdi White-in-rock-enclosure (place name) ; rock within-it it-is- 

"atsi ba* na#aw^Mbutcher;meaton-account-of-it the-one-who-exchanges 
tloh na-ldjo'U hayfork; that-with-which-hay-is-moved-about 

5.96. A noun, a verb, a verb with nominalizer and a postposition 
may form a noun : 

tsi yiUd-n d&de-atlin-i-gi concrete dam; rock it-is-ground place-where it- 

5.97. The following seem to be si-static verbs (third person), which 
I have found in no other forms. They are treated as possessed nouns, 
as if the stems were as indicated here, the possessive pronoun being 
the only modification : 

yi-&te\ yi-stei lunch (si-ste* "my lunch") 
yi-sga\ yi--gq' covering, skin, foliage 

yi-stU, yi-atU' legging, stocking (cp. Haihi-ltle^ "he had buckskin leg- 
gings" NT 160:3) 

5.98. A verb may be used as a noun, often without a nominalizer: 

H"di* thunder; something-that-moans-rep. 

HH m '$ sunset; round-obj.-has-moved-beyond 

*6ltaH pupil, student; one-who-reads 

dahi-stty loom; tied-so-as-to-hang-down 

dahdini-lya'j fried bread, sopaipilla; prolonged-bubbling-on 

nane-lje-' warp; it-has-been-stretched-evenly-and-tightly 

76 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 5.99.-5.106. 

5.99. A verb with a preceding locative may form a noun: 

'ada xi-l\ waterfall 

'aya- sit$ lower loompole; underneath-rigid--obj.-Hes 

y dlah xa*zl\ celebration; crowd -is-in-place 

'd&ah *ale-h council meeting, conference, assembly; crowd becomes 

'q- xa'Vi'l residue after filtering; extraneous it-has-been-caused-to-float- 

y q- xd-'frl skimmed liquid; extraneous it-has-floated-up-out 
t<$d-h djiyd-n, td6-t6i"yd'n watermelon; in-vain one-eats 

5.100. The locative preceding the verb may consist of a possessive 
and postposition: 

bd xaz'4 rule, code; for-its-benefit things-are 
be' xaz'q, legal requirement; with-it things-are 
bil na-'a-c man's male cross cousin; with-him they-two-go-about 
bi* xo'dzq hollowness (as of a pipe) ; inside-it place -is-hollow 
be-'etsxis whip, switch; with-it-something-jerks 

bitte'estcj writing, picture; over-it-something-has-been-caused-to-bear- 

5.101. The complex formed of possessive-postposition and verb 
may be bound together by a suffixed nominalizer : 

f aUi dahiriili saddleblanket ; those-which-hang-down-over-something 

'alMfedisl candy; those-which-are-twisted-one-against-the-other 

6e* 'adiHgci yeast; that-by-means-of-which-something-ferments 

6e* y ddifo-di towel, handkerchief; that-by-means-of-which-self-is-wiped 

5.102. A noun may be formed from a verb and a noun: 

*alt86 xasti-n First Man (deity) 

diyin dine 1 & Holy People; holy group 

naxokd'' dine*& earth people; here-and-there-in-place people (NT 16:16) 

5.103. A noun may be composed of an adjective, noun and verb : 

'acdla' 'attS-' xatdd five-night chant (this may be interpreted also as verb 
verb verb) 

5.104. A noun may be composed of an adjective, a noun, and a 
possessed noun : 

id** tqji- bikin Three -turkey -house (place name) three turkeys their-house 

5.105. Two verbs may form a noun; either or both may be 
nominalized : 

narii'd xatsoh Large Span, Big Bridge (place name) : something-projects- 

across place-is-large 
biUi 'addni biUestiH tablecloth ; that-which-is-eaten-off-of the-one-that- 


5.106. A verb, either nominalized or not, to which a postposition 
has been suffixed, may form a noun : 

J addni-gi dining-room; place-in-which-something-is-eaten 
HHdke-d-gi motion picture theater; place-in-which-something-is-moved- 

5.107.-5.112. THE NOTTN 77 

5.107. The examples and many other words that hare nominal 
force, especially the long descriptive complexes that contain all the 
fundamental grammatical elements, free as well as bound, show 
that each is an utterance. The nouns are, therefore, syntactic as well 
as morphological. 

The tendency to create descriptive terms, marked in all Atha- 
baskan languages, is especially well developed in Navaho. It is the 
device that gives the language its large and subtle vocabulary. Any 
speaker may devise a name for a new object or a circumlocution for 
a well Iftiown one, and is likely to be understood. Consequently, 
there are often three or four names for an ordinary object, all of 
which are correct ; it may be that no two are compounded on exactly 
the same scheme. 

5.108. Place names are often built on the elements to, -to\ td- 
"water;" kin "masonry house;" tse "rock." 

5.109. The prefixes Vindefinite pronoun, and 'a-beyond, into 
indefinite space, so often form verbal nouns that only those which 
cannot be analyzed will be listed in the dictionary; if they can be 
analyzed they are to be put under the verb stem. Many verbal 
nouns have a prefix zwi-about, here and there; they will be listed 
under na- and under the stem as well. 

5.110. Another prefix #o-place, things, especially "supernatural 
things, things not explained or understood," is used as extensively, 
particularly to describe abstractions or ritualistic ideas. It is often 
combined with wa-about, becoming naxo- or naxa- to describe things 
referring to the earth or universe. 

5.111. As is to be expected, the postposition -e m "with instru- 
mental" is a part of many nouns of the type "that-by-means-of- 
which-it. . ." Often the forms are passive: be-'eldg' "gun; that-by- 
means-of-which-explosion-is-caused," Frequently too be* is used 
with a nominalizing suffix in which case be' . . . -i serves as a frame to 
denote an instrument: be-'atiod "small pump; that-by-means-of- 
which-there-is-sucking-through;" be t9 eldg- be* 'andocdltahi "trigger; 

5.112. The fourth person serves, among its other functions, to 
generalize statements, often in nominalized forms, and in this sense 
is equivalent to the impersonal "one" : 

tdi'h djiyd-n, tdi't&i-y&'n watermelon; in-vain-one-eats-some 

t&* xoltad'di' Water Monster; the-particular-one-that-grabs-in-deep-water 

t6 xadji-lkwdi Place-where-one-splashes-water-out-with-hand 

78 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 5.113.-5.114. 

5.113. Forms of the verbs 'a-. . .-'i'l "do, make; 55 and 'a-. . . -U'l 
''make, construct, create" have become stereotypes for descriptive 
nouns : 

H-yU*ini-, HyMHni, H-Vini one-who-makes-rep. 

bd'h H'yiVini baker; bread one-who-makes 

td dilxil H-yiVini brewer; water dark one-who-makes 

'ayo*' H-yiVini dentist; teeth one-who-rep.-does-thus-to 

Vase-' *&V\* (< 'drfi) hospital; place-where-medicine-is-made-rep. 

t&i'yd-n bi-h 'dVini kitchen; food in-it where-it-is-prepared 

bU *£eTini baking powder ; with-it something-which-is-made-thus 

5.114. Borrowed Nouns 

5.114. The preceding array of possibilities for word coining may be 
a reason that Navaho draws comparatively few words from lan- 
guages outside the Athabaskan family. Particularly interesting are 
the reinterpretation of the palatals and the modification of accent of 
words borrowed from Spanish and English. Generally the accented 
vowel has a high or falling tone in Navaho. The following list is 
suggestive, but not exhaustive: 

'al6*z (< arroz Sp.) rice 

'<5Za* (<C oro Sp.) gold, money, watch, clock, time 

bd-h (< pan Sp.) bread 

behi (< pet Eng.) pet, mascot 

belagd-na (< americano Sp.) white person 

belasd-na (< manzana Sp.) apple 

b6*so (<Lpe80 Sp.) money, dollar 

bwd'di (< posole Sp.) pork, bacon, pig (posole is a dish made of hominy 

and bacon rind eaten by the Spanish-Americans of New Mexico) 
mamali* (Eng.) mormon 
mandagi-ya (< mantequilla Sp.) butter 
masdil, basd&l (< pastel Sp.) pie 
malyd-na (Sp.) Mariano (NT 370:9) 
me-l (Eng.) mail 
mi-l, mid (< mil Sp.) 1000 
mdsi (Eng.) cat, pussy 
md-la* (< mula Sp.) mule, donkey 
damf'go, damg (< domingo Sp.) Sunday 
d&h (Sp. and Eng.) tea 

n6*mba (Eng.) number » 

gabiddn (Sp.) capitan (NT 372:24) 
gdd (Eng.) God 

gd'tidrnd'tUso (Sp.) Oanado Mucho (personal name) (NT 374:4) 
gfrso (< queso Sp.) cheese 
gomdntci Comanche (NT 360:27) 
goxwfrh, xoxw6-h (< cafi Sp.) coffee (cp. t&il-xwe'-he'h "Navaho herbal tea" 

in which -xw&h has become a stem and -i (-i) is the nominalizing 

kicmic, Icismas (Eng.) Christmas 
hraist (Eng.) Christ 
xasd-s (Sp.) Jesus (NT 364:12) 

5.114. THENOUH 79 

xolyfcn (Sp.) Juliano (NT 372:7) 

xw&Mi (< fuerte Sp.) Ft. Sumner, Bosque Redondo, and the trip there 

and back (1863-68) 
sindaoy tsindao (< centavo Sp.) cent 
8&8 (K seis Sp.) sixspot in cards 
8iyd*la (<C cigarro Sp.) cigar 
sbada (< spada Sp.) spade in cards 
djM (Eng.) jelly, jam, preserves 
dqi'zis (Eng.) Jesus 
tcaWgo (< chaleco Sp.) vest (cp. Hoijer 1947, p. 179) 

6-6.38. THE PRONOUN 

6-6.12. Person and Number 

6. Navaho has a highly developed pronominal system. The formal 
relationship between the various types of pronouns — independent, 
subjective, agentive, objective and possessive — is very close. Signi- 
ficant changes differentiate them functionally in prefixed or para- 
digmatic forms which may be greatly affected by contraction. 

6.1. Navaho has three numbers — singular, dual, and plural. At 
least five persons must be distinguished for the singular, and the 
third person is subdivided, so that six singular forms designate 
person. Of these four, that is, all the ' 'third persons," have the same 
forms in singular and dual. First and second persons are distinctive 
for the dual. 

6.2. Speakers often fail to distinguish dual and plural, using the 
same forms for both, unless a distinction is needed, when da- is 
prefixed to dual forms. The position of da- is important in relation 
to other prefixes, and it may contract with some of them. Its 
position and other effects are therefore included in the paradigms 

6.3. 1 do not agree with Sapir, Hoijer, Young and Morgan that da- 
is essentially a distributive; it is rather a plural. 1 Forms with da- 
often seem to be distributive in meaning, but most often distribution 
is indicated by the stem and prefixes that enter into combination 
with da-. For instance, if a form of -a*l "move a round object" is 
used with a plural prefix da-, it is likely to be distributive because 
more than one person does not usually take hold of such an object. 
However, if the stem refers to a long, stiff, slender object (-tf'l) or to 
a load (-y&'l), it may reasonably take a plural subject and may mean 
that they act together and not separately. If the plural subjects act 
as individuals, as in loading, the repetitive may be used. Sapir and 
Hoijer interpret the repetitives as "disjunctive" forms, and there- 
fore miss the distributive meanings, attributing them to da-. To be 
sure, there is much overlapping of these forms in the third person 
plural and the distinctions are not determinable from the forms 

1 Young-Morgan 1943, Grammar pp. 2, 69, 70-1. 


6.4.-6.8. THE PRONOUN 81 

6.4. First and second person singular correspond to the same 
persons in English. 

6.5. Four third persons are distinguished. One of these, 'a- "some, 
someone, something," is easily differentiated in meaning. The other 
three are not. If an utterance involves two or more third persons it 
implies one of them as absolute, that is, the identity is established as 
a third person, the subject being denoted by the verb form. If the 
nominal subject is a possessed noun, the possessive is bi-; in the 
paradigms bi- in relation to yi- is indicated as (3). If, however, the 
subject and a possession are mentioned, the possessive is yi- rather 
than bi-, and refers to the first third person, and there may be 
corresponding adjustments of the objective pronoun of the verbal 
complex. This is a matter of relationship between subject, agent, 
object, and verb, as well as between possessor and thing possessed. 
The relationship can be best explained by examples. 

6.6. If there is more than one third personal subject, one may be 
the third person, the other, the fourth (called "3a" by Hoijer and 
Young). Third person is characterized by the absence of a subject 
prefix in the intransitive and transitive active voice. There seems, 
however, to be a third person subject, and perhaps an agent, of the 
transitive passive verb, and because these prefixes have a form 
{yi-> -yi~) apparently identical with many aspective prefixes with 
which they contract, their isolation is a matter of confusion and 

The fourth person is formally easy to identify because its form 
(dji-) is outstanding, and because its position is far forward, that is, 
as nearly initial as possible in the stem complex. Moreover, it 
dominates a great many other prefixes, either absorbing them or 
contracting in such a way as usually to retain its identity. The 
difficulties of the fourth person are in usage, for the assignment of 
the fourth, instead of the third, personal role to a person spoken to 
or about is as subtle as the usage of the familiar and polite forms of 
the second person in the European languages. 

Nevertheless the fourth person may be explained just as are the 
first and second, in terms of itself: 

6.7. Out of respect the fourth may be used consistently of or to an 
individual even if there is only one third person. 

6.8. If there is only one "third" person it will usually be of the 
form mentioned without qualification, or as "3." If however a 
second third person is introduced, the one mentioned first may be 
referred to as "3," but the second one will be designated as "4," and 
these distinctions will be preserved throughout by a person who 
speaks consistently grammatical Navaho. 

82 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 6.9.-6.13. 

6.9. The fourth person may be used instead of the second person 
by siblings of the opposite sex, or by those who want to indicate 
extreme respect in their relationships. In some cases a change from 
second to fourth person may indicate a warning that trickery of 
some sort is planned or detected, that sorcery is to be performed, or 
that a person is speaking sarcastically. 

6.10. First and second person dual possessives and objects have 
the same form; first and second person duals differ in all other 
pronominal forms. 

6.11. To summarize, six persons, first, second, and four third 
persons must be differentiated in the singular; of these the four 
"third persons" are the same in the dual. First and second duals are 
distinctive as subjects. Plurals are formed by using plural stems 
with dual prefixes, or by prefixing da-plural to the duals. 

6.12. Hoijer and Young-Morgan include xo- the prefix of "place'* 
with pronouns in their paradigms. 2 xo- is not by any means re- 
stricted to the third person as would be expected if it were the 
subject, for although xo- may be the subject, it may also mean "in 
place" and may be used with any person meaning "... moves in 
place," Moreover it sometimes seems to be a subject or object 
meaning "things, supernatural things ..." and may occur in any 
person. In fact, it is often thematic. Therefore, instead of including 
xo- in the regular paradigms, I treat it as a prefix with its own 
conjugations; often, of course, they may be defective. Incidentally, 
xo- is one of the very few prefixes with o vowel and therefore a 
pattern of unusual contractual changes when combined with other 

6.13. Independent Pronouns 

1 cih I Dl nxih we two PI danxih we pi. 

2 nih you D2 nxih you two P2 danxih you pi. 

3 yih he, she, it D3 yih they two P3 da-yih they pi. 
{$)bih he, she, it D(3) bih they two P(3) da-bih they pi. 

4 xdh he, she D4 xdh they two P4 da*x6h they pi. 
i Hh someone, Di Hh some two Pi daHh some pi. 


Although the final h of this series is often dropped, its occurrence 
in compounds seems to justify the interpretation of h as the stem 
final. Compare, for instance, nixih-igv "we who are; the-ones-who- 
are-we" (NT 66:21); cih 'frdi "I am the very one who . . . ;" xoh-$- 
"he(4) aforementioned" (NT 36: 17); with cic "is it I, am I the one 

2 Ibid., pp. 2, 77 ff. 

6.13.-6.16. THE raottOTW 83 

who ..." (NT 138:9); ci k$- "I here" (NT 34:4); Had tor ni bbHintv 
"now you guess it" (NT 58: 10) (cp. YMG 4). 

The meaning seems to be rather of the type "it is . . . ," than 
simply, "I, you, he." The independent pronoun is often used without 
a verb. If an utterance includes a verb the independent pronoun is 
not often used, unless it be for emphasis. Person is indicated by the 
pronominal prefix of the verb. 

6.14. The independent pronouns may be nominalized by suffixing 
-*' to the above stems. By preposing id' "just, really, absolutely" 
such a complex would be emphatic: td m cihi "I myself;" td- xohi 
"he(4) himself, they(4) two themselves" (NT 142:19); fa* nxihi 
"we ourselves, you yourselves." 

6.15. Possessive Pronouns 

6.15. There are three series of possessive pronouns — the absolute 
possessives, the possessive prefixes, and the emphatic possessives. 

Absolute Possessives 

1 d- ' it is mine Dl nxi-' it is ours PI danxi-' it is ours 

2 ni-' it is yours D2 nxi-' it is yours P2 danxi-' it is yours 

3 yi- J it is his, hers, its D3 yi-' it is theirs P3 dayi-' it is theirs 
(3) bi-' it is his, hers, its D(3) bi-' it is theirs P(3) dabi-\ da-bi-' it is 


4 x6-' it is his(4) D4 x6-' it is theirs (4) P4 daxo-\ da-xo-' it is 

hers(4) theirs(4) pi. 

i H-' it is someone's Di '<■' it belongs to Pi daH-' it belongs 

some two * to some of them pi. 

Examples of the absolute possessives are: Had ntsoi ndo'h'l "now 
your grandson will become your own again; now your-daughter's- 
child your-own will-become -back" (NT 26:22); td' bv' nlfgo "what 
is possessed; just his-own-being." 

6.16. Possessive Pronominal Prefixes 

1 ci- my Dl nxi- our, belonging PI danxi- our, belonging 

to two to pi. 

2 ni- your D2 nxi- your, belong- P2 danxi- our belonging 

ing to two to pi. 

3 yi- his, her, its D3 yi- their, belong- P3 dayi-, dai-> dei- their, 

ing to two belonging to pi. 

(3)6i- his, her, its D(3)6i- their, belong- P(3) dabi- their, belong- 

ing to two ing to pi. 

4 xa- his, hers(4) D4 xa- their(4), belong- P4 daxa- their, belonging 

ing to two(4) to pi. 

i 'a- someone's, Di 'a- belonging to Pi da'a- belonging to 

something's some two some pi. 

These prefixes are used with nouns to indicate possession: ci-mq, 
"my mother;" ni-kql "your husband;" bi-nd*' "his eye;" danxi- 
Iceyah "our country," etc. They are also used with postpositions — 

7 Eeichard 

84 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 6.16,-6,18. 

the "possessive pronoun" serves as the "object" of the postposition: 
ci-l "with (accompanying)-me;" ni-ya "forcefully away from you;" 
bi-kd'' "on it;" xa-tii "over him(4)." 

The use of the two forms bi- and yi- will be explained in connec- 
tion with the same forms as subject (of passive voice) and object 
pronouns. They differentiate subject from object, possessed subject 
from possessed object, and are closely related to the position of 
nouns or other nouns in the sentence (6.21-6.26.). 

6.17. Emphatic Possessives 

6.17. The emphatic possessives are compounds of fd m "really, 
absolutely, ' ' the independent pronoun , and the corresponding 
possessive prefixed to the noun; td* is sometimes omitted. 

1 td- cih ci- my own. . . 

2 td' nih ni- your own . . . 

3 id' yih yi- his, her, its own . . . 
(3) id- bih bi- his, her, its own . . . 

4 id- xdh xa- his, her(4) own . . . 
i id* Hh 'a- someone's own . . . 

Dl,2 fa- nxi nxi- our own, your own 

PI, 2 id- danxi nxi- our, your own 

P3 td' dayih yi- their own 

P(3) id' dabih bi- their own 

P4 id' daxo xa- their(4) own 

Pi td' daHh 'a- their (some or others) own 

Examples of emphatic possessives are: td' bih bi-tso-sJeid bikd^gi 
"in place on his own thigh;" ci se-'eywe-' (< ci-'aywfr') "it is my 
baby" (NT 36:27); ce'eywfr' ne cicdnHtf "I got it (baby) back; my- 
baby truly I for-me it-was-put-down" (NT 38:2). 

6.18-6. 18a. Subjective and Agentive Pronominal Prefixes 

6.18. The subjective prefixes are the same for the intransitive and 
transitive active voice. Those of the agent of the passive voice differ 
in only a few forms, but since these small differences have important 
effects on adjoining prefixes, both series are given below. The differ- 
ences are due to position and contraction depending upon the place 
of the prefix in the complex, even if, as in the third person, the 
pronoun is zero. 

Subjective prefixes 

Agentive prefixes 

1 -c- I 


by me 

2 -n-, ni- you 


by you 

3 — he, she, it 


by him, her, it 

3 yi- he, she, it (passive only) 

4 d/ji- he, she, the one 


by him, her, the one 

i 'a- someone, something 


'adi- by someone, by something 

Dl -i'd- we two 


by us two 

D2 -oh* you two 


by you two 

6.18.-6.20. THE PRONOUN 85 

Since the aspective prefix or prefixes intervene between da-plural 
and the objective-subjective, or subjective-agentive prefixes, 
changes may occur in various combinations, and the plural is 
omitted here. The combined prefix forms will be found in the prefix 
paradigms (10-10.124.). 

6.18a. All these pronominal prefixes, except dji- and 'a- stand 
immediately before the verb complex, some of them may contract 
with the classifier or the stem initial, dji- and 'a- have a position 
as near initial as possible, depending upon other prefixes in the 

6,19-6.28. Objective Pronominal Prefixes 

6.19. The pronominal object or objects of a verb are prefixed to 
other elements of the verb complex. The object of a verb in the 
active voice precedes the subject and other aspective prefixes. The 
objective pronouns are the same in form as the possessive prefixes, 
except the fourth, which as an object is xo-, as a possessive xa- 
(4.6-4.8., 5.1.). 

6.20. The pronominal prefixes that denote objects of verbs in the 
active voice are subjects of verbs in the passive voice. It is important 
to note that the third person passive has a subject yi-, which though 
lacking in the active voice, is the object, and therefore comes within 
the rule. For convenience these prefixes are repeated here: 

Object of Verb in Active Voice and Subject of Passive 

1 ci- me (passive, "I") 

2 ni-, n- you 

3 yi- him, her, it (passive, "he, she, it") 
(3) bi- him, her, it (passive, "he, she, it") 

4 xo- him, her (passive, "he, she") 
i *a- some, someone, something 

Dl,2 nxi-y nixi- us two, you two (passive, "we two, you two**) 

PI, 2 danxi-, danixi- us plural, you plural (passive, "we plural, you plural") 

The objective pronouns are properly a part of the verb complex. 
Examples are given here to show their position and function: 
'a-ci-yvlxan-i'* "after throwing me away she . . . ; beyond-me-she- 
threw-after" (NT 52: 18); nd-ci-drlt{ "he picked me up; up-me-he- 
paused-starting-to-move-live-obj." (NT 52:25); nd-si-'Altj (si < ci-) 
"he carried me back ; back-me-he-moved-live-obj .-to-end" (NT 
52:25); xaHcq? da'tid'-ci-j-do'dlil "let's see what they(4) will do to 
me again; whatever by-them(4)-pl.-again-I-will-be-done-do" (NT 
64:20); k&rte' nvdo'M'l (ni'- < ni-yi-) "in here you will spend the 
night; in-here night-will-pass-(over)-you" (NT 42:20); xd'dicq? 
ni-ctcf "where were you born V 9 (NT 52: 16). 


86 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 6-21.-6.24. 

6.21. Let us now take up the differentiation of the third persons, 
bi- and yi-> the rules for which apply to possessive and pronominal 
verb prefixes. Since bi- is a third person object with any subject 
except the third, it is not modified when referred to. When, how- 
ever, it appears related to another third person, it is referred to as 
(3). yi- is the third personal possessive or object as distinguished 
from the third subject. 

6.22. If a simple possessive relationship between two nouns is 
expressed, the possessive prefix is bi-: 'awe'' bamq (< bi-md) "the 
baby's mother, it is the baby's mother;" xastvn be'esdzd-' "the man's 
wife, she is the man's wife;" tcidi bidjd'd "the car wheel, it is an 
automobile wheel;" tse bikd' 7 "it is on the rock; rock on-it." 

6.23. If, however, a noun is possessed and followed by a verb in 
the third person, or any other relationship between two third 
persons is established, care must be taken to distinguish the subject 
and object. These depend upon the position of the nouns and other 
related words in the sentence as well as upon the verb form. 
Contrasting forms will bring out some of the differences. It will 
be noted that some of the sentences become ridiculous when the rules 
are not observed. The informants say that many Navaho make such 
mistakes ; possibly the pronominal system is as difficult for them 
as for us. 

6,24. Subject-Object 

*awi*' yijtci (intr.) the baby was born 

*aw6'' yictci (< yis-l-tcty she gave birth to a baby 

y awd^ bam4 yizyas the baby scratched its mother; baby its-mother 

bam4 'awi-' yizyas its mother scratched the baby; its-mother baby 

*aw6-* bamtj, ndidi-lxa-l the baby hit its mother with a stick; baby 
its-mother it-caused-it-8tick-to-move-(against-her) 

rm^V dibd yiyi'8x\ (< yiyi-s-lxj) the coyote killed the sheep ; coyote 
sheep it-killed-it 

dini 'awfr* yiyi-si'h the man is standing the baby up; man baby 

dini djddi yiyi-lted-h the man sees the antelope; man antelope he- 
sees -it 

djddi din6 yiyi-ltse-h the antelope sees the man 

djan tarn yi'fczlo 9 John cheated Tom 

djan tarn yidi't'o'loh John will cheat Tom 

tia m '4 yi' yiyi'giz he cleaned out the basket (EW 104:25) 

6.25.-6.26. the pronoun 87 

6.25. Object- Subject or Subject-Agent 

'awi-' 'asdzfy' bictc{ (< bis-l-tc{) the woman bore the baby; baby- 
woman she-bore-it 

'awi- y bam4 ndbidi-lxa-l the baby's mother beat it; baby its-mother 

dibi mq'i' bi-sx\ (< bi-8-l-x{) the coyote killed the sheep; sheep coyote 

dini 'awe*-' bi-8j,-h the baby is standing the man up 

'aw^*' dini bi-8j,-h the man is standing the baby up 

djddi dine bi-ltse'-h the man sees the antelope 

dini djddi bi'ltsi-h the antelope sees the man 

'acki-td bi-lx6-h the boy is drowning; boy water it-is-killing-him 

From these examples it seems that in the active voice the yi- 
form of the object is used if the nominal subject precedes the object, 
but that the bi- form is used if the nominal object precedes the sub- 
ject. FoBowing the rule that the object of a verb in the active voice 
becomes the subject of the verb in the passive, and the subject of the 
active becomes the agent of the passive (8.22.), the bi- form is used 
if the order of the nouns is subject-agent-passive verb. 

6.26. The following examples are more complicated ; they involve 
the bi- and yi~ forms with postpositions and their relation to other 
parts of the sentence. 

Forms with yi~ 

i aw6'' > bam4 yil nli the baby loves its mother; baby its-mother with-her 

H* y yihd*' dahne-zdd he is sitting on the horse; horse on-it he-is-sitting- 
on (cp. NT 26:25) 

yibaH6-8ta? he has counted past the limit; its-capacity he-has-counted- 

bidjd'd yq,'h niind y 4 he put it back on the wheel; its-wheel on-it 

tcidi bidjd-d yq,'h neind^ he put the wheel back on the car; car its- 
wheel on-it he-put-it- back 

ytyh yi'a'h he is pawning round obj.; into-it he-is-moving-round-obj.- 

ye' xwtfeztty (<C yi-e* x6*aztty) he tied him(4) with it; with-it he-tied- 

bildcga'n ye' danidiyo-lxdl they will kill you with their claws; their- 
claws by-means-of-them they-will -kill -you (NT 42:11) 

gdlifi* 'dsa** yil yilyol skunk was running carrying a bucket; skunk 
bucket with-it it-was-running 

bitsi* td' yil xa- le f nzin he (father-in-law) was jealous of him (son-in- 
law); his-daughter just with-him on-account-of-her(4) jealousy 

88 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 6.26.-6.28. 

Forms with hi- 

*awfr y barn4 bil nl{ the baby's mother loves it; baby its-mOther with-it 

H'* hikd'* dahne-zdd the horse is sitting on him; horse on-him it-is- 

biba > td-8td > the list is exhausted; beyond-its-capacity it-has-been 

xaya- xayi'lkd^ni^ biya* niyinikd after he had set it down in front of 

him(4) he set it down in front of him(self) (WE) 

6.27. Compared with the usage of yi- and bi- the fourth person is 
simple. Like the first, second, and indefinite, it takes bi~ as thethird 
person object because the subject and object are different personal 
forms : 

bamq *«w^*' dzizyas the mother scratched the baby; its-mother baby 

'a«^-' xam# dzizyas the baby scratched its mother; baby its(4) -mother 

*am$ 'awfr* dzizyas a mother scratched a baby; some-mother baby 

"amd xwe'ewd-' dzizyas this mother scratched her baby; some-mother 

her(4)-baby she(4)-scratched-(it) 
be'esdzd'n nte'-' xwe'esdzd'n 'ddji-la- she who had been his wife was made 

his(4)wife; his-wife used-to-be his(4)-wife was-made-by-him(4) 

(NT 30:18) 
ba-jniyd (< 6a- djiniyd) he(4) came up to him 
xalcq* *&dji-la- (the woman) made him her(4) husband; her(4)-husband 

tsd'dszV be' be'ts*iztf$ (< bVadziztlfy) with yucca fiber he(4) tied it; yucca 

with-it he(4)-tied-it 

The examples cited with a translation as good as I can make 
illustrate the extreme complexity of the third and fourth personal 
pronouns. It is likely that I have not stated all reasons for each 
usage. Another problem is the use of bi- or yi-(in the third person) as 
a verbal theme. The simplest verb forms and those occurring most 
often take yi- as a definite third person object if the form is of the 
type "he . . . it" (3-3); in the other persons the object is implied 
rather than expressed. 

6.28. Other verbs seem to require an expressed object, in which 
case the object is thematic. The formula for such verbs will be 
written 0-. . .-stem. The following are examples of such stems 
(progressive only) : 

0-. . .- y ah tempt, lure . . . on, deceive, fool . . . 
O- . . . -dil catch up with . . . moving 
O- . . . -tyl take ... a long stiff obj. away 
O- . . . -toil release . . . , let . . . out of one's grasp 
O-'o-theme . . . -tto-l tie ... to 

'a-beyond-O- . . . -l^ac cause two persons to move, despatch two persons 
(EW 94:13,15) 

6.28.-6.31. THE PRONOUN 89 

>a-0- . . .-l-'yl keep hidden from . . . (EW 94:6) 

'd-thtw-O-. . .-l-'j-l harm . . . ; cause doing thus to . . . 

0'a*-di-. . .-loh cheat . . . 

O-di- . . ,-si'l make . . . stand up; cause ... to be righted 

O-di- . . . -16s lead . . . away on a rope 

O-di- . . . -dial break ... off with force 

na-0^-(<O-na-against). . .-dy-l wear . . . away 

tsi'-O-di- . . ,-l-kah make them pi. . . . wild; cause pi. persons to go in 

0-d£--(< 'a-theme)ni- . . . -bic boil 

0-di--(< Vtheme)n£- . . t -l~bic boil . . . ; cause boiling . . . 
0-di--(< 'a-theme)n£- . . . -bic braid . . . 
O-m-uniform. . .-l-zfrl grow up 
O-wi-uniform. ..-86-1 raise ...» cause ... to grow 

0i-{< 0-nd-against)na-0-dim-prol 4-%i*l instruct . . . , teach . . . 

O-nd- . . . -l-tih cover . . . 

Of the steins that require an object, many are causatives and, in 
some oases at least, bi- seems to be the object of the causative 
(cp. 8.25.). I suggest that if the primary meaning of the stem were 
ascertainable, it would indicate whether or not an object is de- 
scribed in the verb, and therefore the extension of meaning made by 
the thematic object (cp. 8.25.). 

6.29-6.32. Other Pronominal Prefixes 

6.29. The following may be prefixed to postpositions or verb 
complexes as are any other pronominal prefixes; except for the 
reflexive, they do not require paradigms, since they are phonetically 
reasonably stable : 

'd-, 'ddi- reflexive (see 10.81-10.81c.) 

6.30. *axi~ together. This prefix differs from the reciprocal (6.31.) 
in that the individuals concerned do not necessarily affect one 
another : 

'axil together, accompanying one another 

'ax-e* one with the other, by means of each other 

'axe- exactly similar, with no difference (probably the same as the 

'axi- (< 'aa^-together-na-against) proportionate to (10.95g-10.95m.) 
'axi-do-rli-d they spoke to each other (NT 26:17) 

6.31. 9 al- reciprocal, one affecting the other, affecting one another: 

'al-ta' nzpgo alternating they stood ; each-other-between standing 

'al-tdic facing each other 

'al-t&f siz% facing each other they stand 

'allce*' siz\ one after another they stand 

'al-yd one through the other 

la' 'al-yoidfr' many people from different places (NT 36: 19) 

90 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 6.32. _6.35. 

6.32. 'alxi- in position together one affecting the other: 

'al-xq* two in position side by side 

'alxe- position of one affected by position of the other 

y alxU accompaniment of two, one affecting the other 

y alxi-' one within the other, one affecting the other because both are 

within the same confines 
'abaniyg- bit Hlxidi-lka? (< 'alxi-) the skins are sewed together (NT 


6.33-6.34. Demonstrative Pronouns 

6.33. Navaho has no article, but has several series of demonstra- 
tives, which are frequently used instead of nouns. Demonstratives 
are stems treated like nominal stems— they may be free, or bound; 
if bound, they occupy an initial position; postpositions or other 
enclitics may be suffixed to them. We shall see that demonstrative 
adverbs or locatives, have the forms 'a-, 'a*-, and 'd-, which occur 
seldom as free forms (7.1.). It is possible that the demonstrative 
pronouns of the second and third persons are derived from these 
bound forms, for example, 'ar, 'ev < 'a-r-nominalizing suffix; 
'ar, 'er < 'd-r-nominalizer. If this is so, the forms expressing mild 
emphasis have two nominalizing suffixes: 'ai'di, 'ei'di < 'a-r-i (d is 
a glide consonant). One series of demonstrative pronoun is emphatic, 
the other milder, and often used with pointing. 

Emphatic demonstrative Milder demonstrative 

di- this one (near speaker and di*di this is the one 

person addressed 

'at-, *ei' 9 V that one near you 'ai'di, 'ei'di that one near you 

'dt-, '&■ that one remote 'dvdi, *$i*di that one remote 

6.34. Any of these demonstratives may refer to a whole set of 
circumstances, or series of events as an antecedent, and since 
antecedents are largely taken for granted, it is often very difficult 
to determine the meaning of the speaker or the narrator. 

6.35-6.38. Indefinite Pronouns 

6.35. Although there is no article, la 9 "one, some one of" may be 
used to indicate a specific person or thing, or to emphasize "one out 
of many, one out of a group." Since it has no plural form, it may 
also indicate "some of a group or whole" : 

la* ca* na?a*h give me one of them 

la? ca* fidjd*h give me some of them (YM 140) 

la? 'ayoigo dabitM-ni some (sheep) are very thin 

la? nd-nd another one, some more 

la? bind-xdi yearling; one-that-is-a-year-old (YM 100) 

la? dahto-'go some of the dew 

6.35.-6.38. THE PKONOTXN 91 

la' dint bil da-nli some (customs) seem worthwhile to the Navaho; 

some Navaho with -them they -are 
la' fa- bil yd'dda-U some are much in favor (as of a plan); some just 

with-them they-are-good 
to la' xolfrgo if there should be some water ; water some there-being 

la' may enter into complexes with postpositions and enclitics in 
the same way as the demonstratives and interrogatives (7.1-7.2.): 

la' ndi not one, not even one (YM 140) 

la'4gi- the other one (YM 140) 

la'-dah some of those existing, some for example 

If la' is used twice, as la' . . . la' it indicates "one . . . another, the 
other . . . , some . . . other . . . . " 

dja-n tcidi la' yide'sbfrz la' diVbfyz John drove one car, I drove the other 

6.36. Whereas la' refers to something known or restricted, lei' may 
mean "a certain one, an unexpected, strange one" (cp. 11.118. for 
other uses of lei'): 

'ati-ngi tcidi Hi' yi-ltiq Id it occurs to me that I did see some car or 

other (a strange car) on the road (FS 15) 
xasti-n lei' ca* niyd some strange man came (to me) (FS 19) 
to'h nlf' Ui'gi niyd he came to a certain (unidentified) river (FS 19) 
xastvntsoh 'asdzdni Hi' yd'dzyeh Mr. Big married a certain young 

woman (unknown to the speaker) (FS 19) 

6.37. The following illustrate the use of some of these pronouns: 

'ei- lp' bih that horse is his (YMG 14) 

'ei* If'' bi-' sil$-' that horse became his own (YMG 4) 

cih '4'di I am the very one who . . . 

nld-hdji 'a- 'di* that one over there; the- one-there- on-his-side there- 
remote that-particular-one-remote 

la' '&- kote-go ba- ntsidei-ke-8 some of us are in favor of it; some that- 
remote so-it-being we-pl.-think-about-it 

6.38. Besides these demonstratives there are adverbial demonstra- 
tives, often used with any of these or by themselves functioning in 
the same capacity : 

niydi the one near at hand 

niydidi the one being pointed out 

nla-, nld-h there not very far. This is doubtless related to -Id* which 

is used for comparison (9.4-9.5.). 
iM£ far but still visible 
nlii (< rile-i') the one over there 
nzah at a short distance 
nza-d very far 
nzd-d as far as (unknown distance) 

7-7.116. BOUND FORMS 

7-7.10. Bottkd Forms Initial Position 

7. A series of bound forms compares with the nominal prefixes 
and demonstrative pronouns in occupying initial position. Such 
elements are demonstrative, adverbial, and interrogative. They are 
combined with suffixes — postpositions and enclitics — and have 
verbal force; the verb may be expressed but need not be. The 
phonetic-semantic pattern of demonstrative-adverbial elements is 
the same as that of the interrogatives. Possibly the fine distinctions 
in vowel length and meaning are not felt by all speakers. 

7.1. Demonstratives . 

'a- there near speaker, 

*a-d$- i> thither from 

there near speaker 
'a-di at (the place) 

'a-do- on from there 

near speaker 
*a-dji* to a point near 


a*- there near second 

a--d$-' thither from 

there near you 
a- -di in place there 

near you 
a- -do- on from there 

near you 
a'-dji" 1 to a point near 


d- there, near third 
person, remote 

d'-d^-' thither from 

(over) there 
d'-di in place (over) 

d • -do ■ on from over 

&--dji y to a point over 


xa- (gen.) who, 
which, what, where 

xdi (xa-i) who, what 
in general 

xa-d^ what thither 
from definite point 

xa-di where is it (at, in 

xa-do- on from where 

xa-gd* on to where 

xa-djV up to what 

7.2. Interrogatives 

xa'- what near you, 
what in immediate 
time (past, future) 

xai* what, which one 

near you 
xa-Hh who, which of 

xa-'d^' 7 thither from 

where near you 
xa*-di where is it in 

place near you 
xcb'-do* on from where 

near you 
xa--go* on to where 

near you 
xa'-dji' up to where 

near you 

xa- what in remote 
future; who, which of 

xdi' who, which of all 

xd'ih who, which of 

xd--d(y thither from 

where remote 
xd *di whereat of all 

xd'-dd' on from where 

xd - -go • on to where 

xd--dji y up to where 



7.2.-7.5. BOUND FORMS 93 

The following examples, though few, seem to indicate that 
some of the demonstratives may be free forms : 

V niznizi-d he(4) scraped it (hot earth) aside; there he(4)-moved- 

scattered-substance-to-end (NT 80:12) 
'd- over there (NT 188:21; 190:15) 
'Hep *d- yilyod he ran to them over there (NT 64:6) 

7.3-7.10. Adverbial Elements 

7.3. Some adverbial elements may have the same initial position 
as the adverbial demonstratives, and some may also have a position 
corresponding with that of a postposition or enclitic. Such elements 
may refer to time as well as space : 

7.3a. nah- aside, toward the side (cp. -nah 7.54.) : 

nah-go- td-di da-tSi nijde-ltd-lgo after taking about three steps aside; 

aside-toward three-times perhaps after-he(4)-had-stepped (NT 34 :10) 
nah-dji* dind-h move off to one side (YMG 52) 
'ak&'dQ** nah-d^ ^d-d^ '»*(££•' dahi-zf stand over there; next frorn-the- 

side from-over-there from-here stand 
yas nah-go- 'ayi-zge*d he shoveled the snow aside (YMG 32) 
to- nah-dji* 'ayi-ld6-l he merely threw them (moccasins) aside (NT 34 : 7) 

7.4. ?wr-, nqr- sidewise, leaning, across. This element may have 
initial or final position, and is to be compared with na*nv "across, in 
horizontal position;" and with na-ni-go "breadth, width, crossing, to 
the side, being crosswise, sidewise." Compare also teeriq; and xaria* 
both of which are said to have the same meaning "across" : 

na-H-go' he fell sidewise (NT 336:3) 

na-H-k$'Z long rigid obj. toppled over, fell sidewise (YMG 32) 

xadjilgic na- dahizdi-l forked lightning flashed across (NT 208:3) 

ti-s ncffiti* Row-of-cottonwoods-across (place name) 

tozia nq- nina'a-h turn the bottle on its side (WM) 

tsi rwjt* sa'dni Leaning Rock, Tilting Rock (WM) 

nanVd it projects across (YM 11) 

Uo8 dilxil nand'd djini yodahgo a dark cloud was lying across up above 

they say (NT 224:19) 
na- daaitQ-go (gun) lying across (his knees) (NT 384:22) 
xa*g6-na- Id tsina- ndi-kah Id ? where truly can we cross ? where-toward- 

across truly across we-pl.-shall-go-to-end truly (NT 200:4) 
*4i bitd^-h go-na- do- na'ddd-da in front of this (woodpile) one is not 

supposed to go; this in-front-of-it toward-across one-does-not-go- 

across (NT 324:9) 
yondnd^^ ko-na- Id the crossing from the other side is here: from-the- 

other-side here-across truly (NT 200: 18) 
*alna--go crisscross, being-across-one-another (NT 80:16) 

7.5. yd- (yo-) off from actor, off into unlimited space, probably 
out of sight (cp. yfr'o- \<yd' 9 a-) "out of sight ;" and biyo "somewhat 
farther, . . .er than"). WM thinks yo- and yo- are exactly the same. 

94 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.5.-7.9. 

They are listed separately here because the pronunciation may be a 
phase of linguistic diversity (13.19.): 

yo-ne'i, yo-ne'6 inside of house away from the speaker (NT 27*5:11) 
yo-yohdff toward a point farther on from subject (NT 94:25; 206:22) 

7.6. go- at a definite point within a limited area; moving within a 
limited area : 

go-ne* room, corral, enclosed space 

go-ne 1 do- xaz y $-da there is no room inside (YMG 29) 

kin go-ne* yahH-yd I went into the house (YMG 29) 

kin 6v' go-ne' sik$ (if speaker is outside the house) water (contained 

substance) is inside the house; house within-it room contained - 

substance-is (WM) 
la* dego bq-h go-dei la' ya-go bq-h go-yah some (gods) (moving) up its 

(knoll) side others moving down on it; some being-up on-it in- 

placo-up some being-down on-it in-place-down (NT 188: 15) 
id- bidd-' go-ya- down along the upper edge (WE) 
bidah go-ya- yigd-l he is walking downslope (YMG 29) 
boJco-h go-ydi- 'e-lyod it ran down into the arroyo (NT 50:4) 
so-dzil bidah go-yah down the side of Mt. Taylor (they started) (NT 

go'q- disappearing behind a small hill (curve) 

di- koniUe go-ya* kg' nU- go-ya- this fireplace under there under the fire 
M&i gd-na- nanitai-h lay a stick across (YMG 29) 
'alni- go-na\ 'alnd'ona- around the middle, center (NT 412:18) 
xani-* go-na- around his(4) waist (NT 78: 13) 

7.7. ko- right here, close at hand: 

ko-di here (speaker points) ; help ! help ! (equivalent to hw<?& "over here") 

(NT 34:3) 
ko-c-de*' it's in here toward me, practically in my hand (FH) 
ko-ici* at this point it must have been (NT 26: 17) 
ko-y#- (her tumpline) so as mentioned (EW 120:3) 

7.8. ko- here, a little farther away than ho- ; thus, so : 

ko-'q- here hidden by a curve, small hill (NT 300: 14) 

ko-dei up here, up this way 

ko-ne > here inside (YME) 42 

ko-U-go 'dVj, this is the way it is done (YME 91) 

ko-na- across here, the crossing is here (YMG 31 ; NT 200:8) 

ko-ya* down here (YMG 31) 

ko-ne'i right in here, right then (NT 28: 16) (same as kone' [FH, WM]) 

ti-s tiidd korildi-l a very large cottonwood; cottonwood very so com- 
paratively-large (NT 24:19) 

td- do- ndo J ko nzahi a very short time; it was not at all long (far) 

ko ndxo-dza-go next year at this time; so when-it-happens-again 
(YMG 31) 

ko xo-ti-dd,-* last year at this time; so-time-was-past 

bil ko xodo-ni-l they became suspicious (NT 294:2) 

7.9. yd- (yd-) away from speaker, further; in future, yd- becomes 
ywi-- with some speakers (cp. 5.52, 13.19.): 

7.9.-7.13. BOUND FORMS 95 

yo-'q* moving off hidden by slight depression (WM) 

yo-^q-go moving over edge, convex surface (as coffee over top of cup) 

li-j yo'ddf earthen spillway; soil farther-over-convex-surface-it-flows 
yo-dahgo above, up above (NT 274: 19) 
yo-dahgo- higher up 

yo-yahdi down there (person speaking is above) (NT 118:7) 
yo-yahgo-, ywi'-dahgo- lower down, down below 
yo-nan-d^^ from the other side 
to- yo-ndn-dji on the opposite side 

yd-nd-8-do- after a time; further-forward-from (NT 24: 13; 38:22) 
kin yo-ne' yaKanakfyh take the can (contained substance) into the 

house; house toward-room move-contained-substance-in (FH) 
y6-ne*£ inside (of house, car, corral) if person speaking is outside (WM) 
yo-ncfni the other side; further-across (YMG 29) 

7.10. Bound forms that are usually initial may be compounded 
with independent forms : 

'atah 'a-kodzvdza* she (Changing Woman) joined them in this, had the 

same feelings; amongst-them so-she(4)-became 
'a-ko-ya- VWe' down there he was laid (WE) 
'a-fcf it's here, off away from here (FH) (EW 100:14) 
td-'a-k$' tio-go nannd right here outside you go (stay) (NT 28: 19) 
'akd-ni in this neighborhood (NT 30:6) 
J a-kwi-h it's there, off from you (FH) 
'd-kon? then, there inside (EW 102: 1 ; YME 42, 90) 
"d-ty* just about there (FH), right there (YME 42) (NT 20: 19; 230:6) 
'd-kQ--dah xa-ho nV about here, here or so that one (NT 34: 16) 
'd-kwe'6 right there (YM 90) 
'd-kwi-h just about there, less definite than 'dhwe'e (YMG 8) 

7.11-7.103. Postpositions and Enclitics 

7.11. Formally postpositions and enclitics are similar. Postposi- 
tions are so called more because some correspond to English pre- 
positions than for any morphological reason. It is doubtless better 
to classify postpositions and enclitics together, pointing out that 
some correspond to prepositions, which may be locative and 
temporal, that others are syntactic, and that a few are almost 
impossible to classify. 

7.12. The largest number are postpositional: the occurrence of 
some static and progressive forms should be noted: -r' (stat.) 
"within," -i'h (prog.) "into;" -to' (stat.) "between," -tak (prog.) 
"among;" -tdq,*' (stat.) "in the way, obstructing, protective;" -tdd'h 
(prog.) "moving in front of, protectively, interceding for." 

7.13. Examples of temporal enclitics are: -|* "gone, past, de- 
ceased;" -6a' "waiting for;" -da*' "past time;" -tah "pause, lapse of 
time;" -m' "past, deceased." Examples of syntactic enclitics, some 
of which have temporal significance, are: -e*' "future subordina- 

96 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.l3,_7.18. 

tion;" -*•' "completive subordination; 33 -£o u generai subordination;" 
and -cq* "interrogative," -c/* "probability." Causatives are treated 
exactly as postpositions: 'vbq' "because of that;" ci-nvna "because 
of me;" ni-niye "because of you;" bi-tte* "because of, according to 
him." The enclitic -di "times" is probably not related to -di (stat.) 
"in place, at;" -d§*' (prog.) "from a definite point" is to be compared 
with -d$' J used with numerals to denote the number of sides. We 
have already seen (4.33.) that some of the enclitics (postpositions) 
have nominal as well as locative force : bi-ne* "his back, behind him ;" 
bi-kd-' "on it, skin (of person), its top, the earth." 

7.14. Postpositions with a vowel initial have a form slightly 
different from the rule given for mere prefixing of the possessive of 
the type Ci-. The vowel of the possessive (objective) is lost, only the 
initial consonant being used: ca* "to me," na* "to you," ba\ yet* "to 
him, it," instead of cia\ nia', etc.; cd "for my benefit," instead of 
ci-d, etc.; cq'h "on my body," instead of ci-qr, etc.; ce* "with me," 
be' "by its means," instead of bi-e\ etc.; bi-h "into it," bi ,y "within 
it," etc. 

7.15. The noun eddi "my older sister," from -ddi, rather than 'ddi, 
is of the same phonetic pattern. From it we may conclude that 'ddi 
"someone's older sister" is composed of 'a-indefinite pronoun and 
-di; wherefore the initial glottal stop belongs to the indefinite 
pronoun and not to the stem (cp. 5,5.1, 5.18.). 

7.16. Contrasted with such stems is J 6h "grazing, barely missing," 
which has the regular form ci'oh or co'oh "barely missing me," 
bo'oh "barely missing him," etc. The number of words with a vowel 
initial is small; but such elements are significant. They are bound, 
rather than free forms, and probably point to some historical in- 
fluence different from that of the more frequent pattern. 

7.17. All types of enclitics have been arranged in alphabetical 
order : 

•'as scorn, disbelief: 

gah-'as a ra-a-a-bbitl (when one thought it was big game {FS 1) 
de-stta-z^os co-o-ld ? How do you mean "cold" ? (FS 1) 

7.18. -a m to, for, from, about, on account of, concerned with. When 
-a* is used with verbs of giving, it signifies that the possession is 
temporary rather than permanent, -a* when meaning "to, toward," 
denotes "all the way to. . .," as differentiated from ~dji\ -dj{* "to- 
ward a point;" and -tc^ "in the direction of, not necessarily all the 

\ixa- yiniU-h he is folding the paper; toward -each- other it-is-being- 

made (arranged) (WM) 
*dda* xalni' he is confessing; things-are-being-told about-self 

7.18.-7.22. BOUND FORMS 97 

bet- cini* my grief; on-account-of-it I-worry (my-mind) 

bd ba- na'alde-h for his benefit it was being done, for his benefit the 

group busied itself; for-his-benefit on-account-of-it group-went- 

fa- 'ada- "dxolyq, take care of yourself; just for-self you-be-careful 

(NT 32:13) 
ca- nd'd'h, or ca- nd'a-h (< ci-a*) give, lend me a ro\md obj.; to-me 


7.19. -a-ty-h (prog.) at, toward with force, attacking: 

xa-tyh nddjahgo they attacking him(4) ; attacking-him(4) they -moving 
ca-t\'h nddjahgo they are attacking me (WM) 

7.20. -a for benefit of, for . . .'s sake, advantage; against: 

bd (<C bi-d) for his benefit 

cd na?a,'h y cd nd'd-h give it to me to keep; for-my-benefit move-round - 

to bd tcictcini Child-of-the-water (name of culture hero); water for-its- 

benefit the-one-who-was-born 
bd xaz'4 law, code, rule; for-their-benefit there- is-decree 
bd 'oltaH teacher; the-one-for-whose-benefit-it-is-done-in-series 
xd 'dyfrh sity' she became related by marriage; for-his(4)-benefit-mar- 

rying became (NT 80:20) 
^asdzdni bd H-gehi- the bride; the-woman-for-whom-marriage-is-ar- 

ranged (NT 312:8, 15) (cp. dini H-gehi- groom; the-man-who-is- 

to-be-married NT 312: 15) 

7.21. -qs hidden, out of sight behind a slight knoll or depression. 
This element has certain characteristics of a verb, some of a post- 
position or enclitic : 

yilMid Hi' go-'q* unexpectedly vanishing behind a little hump 
xand-'q' 'edyod he disappeared over the hill 

ndxd-q* y dndzo-dd he moved back out of sight behind a slight depres- 
sion; disappearing-again he(4)-is-going-back 
yo-'q' off out of sight in a depression (WM) 

7.22. -qrA (stat.) in addition to, extraneous to, effective, but not 
a part of, of different character, not appropriate to, improper, 
irregular : 

yq'h yVd-h he is pawning round obj.; extraneous-to-him round-obj.- 

tsin bq-h xasisria* I climbed the tree; tree extraneous-to-it I-crawled- 

yq*h nindnVq he put wheel back on it; attached-to-it he-moved-round- 

obj .-back-to-end 
\-h daxaz'q, sickness, illness 
'ax-q-h attached side by side; together-attached 
'al-xq'h moving side by side; affecting-each-other-side-by -side 
biH-l id- bq-h it (shade) still had branches on it; its branches just on- it 
nahq* diidildjah it (child) will make fire for us (NT 38:12) 
be- *4dq-h tsizde-zki-z he(4) thought about himself; with-it self-additional- 

ly he(4) -considered (NT 28:27) 

98 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.22.-7.26. 

to- xd yq*h narli-yd-d he just shook it (pollen) off it (white horse) for 

him(4) (NT 122:2) 
id- 'axq-h bidd'dl&eh nt£- Id adjacent their cornfields used to be (NT 


7.23. -qrc, -'ax opposite: 

ba-'q-ci- ndsdli'' opposite it (sorcery) it has gone (become) (Pr 60:40) 
yd-'q-c in the sky; up-opposite 

7.24. -c- with instrumental, by means of. This postposition con- 
tracts in the pattern bi-e* > be' : 

be-di (< bi-e-'d-i; d is a glide consonant) utensil, implement, tool, 
instrument, wherewithal; the-means-of 

be- 'addni cutlery, eating utensil; that-by-means-of-which-something- 
is -eaten 

be- 'akali bat; that-by-means-of-which-something-is-struck 

be-* eHe' eltcihi pencil, crayon, steel stamp; that-by-means-of-which- 

be- \izlcazi refrigerator; that-by-means-of-which-something-freezes 

be- na'adWi- steering wheel; the-particular-one-by -means-of- which - 

be-so ne- 'dsdy-dd-' if you need money; money with-you if-it-disappears 
(FS 4) 

y dde- dahdi-yd-h he started forth of his own volition, he got going under 
his own steam; self- with he-paused-starting-forth (note that 'dd- 
self does not change tone with -e-; cp. *&*de- "with that remote 

'dde- xand-dzd he got himself out of a difficulty; self -with he-went- 

be- xodico the place was soft (furry) with them (otterskins) (NT 204: 15) 

xwe- xonvgaigo becoming very hot for him(4); with-him becoming- 
very -hot (NT 20:1) 

tseycfdindini- be- xo-yan the house was made of rock crystal; rock- 
crystal with-it house-is (NT 204: 15) 

xa'icq* ' ahe" ] ~e- -do* yido-Uolic let's try if it will nurse at breast; is-it-that 
breast-with-also it-will-suck-interrogative (NT 86:13) 

tid-Wi nsi-dlj-' Me be-, J6e be- fa-la* i nsi-dlp 1 * we have become kin, we have 
become one as relatives; one we-have-become courtesy with-it (WM) 

7.25. -c way, custom, manner, kind, concerning; probably the 
same as -c instrumental (7.24.): 

na'kai-e- Mexican customs; concerning-Mexicans 

'atlo-h-e- concerning weaving 

nlo-e- Hail Chant ; concerning-hail 

ndto~e- Shooting Chant ; concerning-arrow-shooting 

7.26. -e* (prog.) -ward. This enclitic may be more closely related 
to -e*' "future subordination" (7.27.) than to -e* "instrumental' ' 
(7.24.). It may be the progressive future as compared with the 
completive future -e*\ This and -e* "concerning" seem to rather 
specialized; there are only a few examples of each: 

7.26.-7.31. BOUND FORMS 99 

tq^-e- backward 

ndtfy'-e- receding, degenerating; back-reversing-ward 

nd-s-e* onward 

7.27. -e*' future; one person gives in after an argument, "well! let 
us see; let's suspend judgment!" This particle is future compared 
with -v y completive (7.28.): 

ttad~e- J now will be the time, now will be a good time (FS 30) 
m-'-e-' it will have been (NT 30:21) 

yd'dtih-e-' it will be good (a common greeting, "hello! goodbye") 
ntcg'Sn-e-' it will be useless in future (NT 190:5) 

bijdn-e-" (< bij4-e-') he is lucky, he will have luck, good fortune (FS 22) 
bit yaKo^ac-e*' it may be best if some one comes in with him (EW 249, 
n. 69) 

7.28. -i'' subordinating suffix, "after having . . ., when . . . had 
. ..,and ...": 

yayvnil-i*'' after having poured, when he had poured 

yah'iyd-i^ ne-zdd he came in and sat down (FS 14) 

tsin la' neidi-t^-i-' ndcidi-lxa-l after picking up a stick he hit me (FS 14) 

yond'S-i-* after continuing . . ., continue and . . . 

xayikd-n-i-' (Kxayikq-i-') after having set it out 

7.29. -i- 9 (stat.) within, inside, all wrapped up in. Young-Morgan 
consider this postposition the same as -yi' (YMG 22): 

bd-c bi'^hgH stove; metal that-which-has-fuel-inside-it 

hi'* sizvni- (< sizf-i-) his soul;the-particular-one-which-stands-within- 

'alni-go bi-' di-U^ it was burned in the center (NT 24:23) 
Witso yi-' nd-bayan another rat had a home in it; rat in-it again-his- 

dwelling (NT 44:10) 

7.30. -rh (prog.) into: 

xwi'h into him(4) 

to bi'h yVq I put round obj. into the water 

to nte-l bi'hVfrl he floated into the ocean; water wide into-it he- 
floated (NT 28:1) 

h\-h yV$ (< Mn-i'h) I took round obj. into town 

le-h (< le-i-h) into the soil, ground 

le-h yiyiltf he buried him; in-ground he-laid-body (YM 5) 

bi'h Mjidd-hgo he(4) getting into it (log); into-it he(4)-started-for (NT 

bike*' yi-hV e*zi- y after she had put on her moccasins; her-moccasins 
into-them she-started-to-move-her-feet-after (NT 34:18) 

ci'e* 1 * bi'hicd'h (< bi-h xicd-h) I am putting on my shirt, coat; my-shirt 

7.31. -ine* 9 "you'll see!" This future particle is used when one of 
the speakers knows (or thinks he knows) what will happen, the 
other does not. It may indicate "you'll be sorry if you don't . . ." : 

8 Keichard 

100 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.31.-7.35. 

dikwi'-ne^ how much, how many there will be ? 

xa' dtl- -ne^ whatever it will be 

xa'-i-ne-' xa'dfi-go sometime, somehow he will be sorry (NT 34:22, 

trans. WM) 
x&*-ne*\ x&i-ne^ who, what may it be ? (FS 22) 
dabijd--ne-' they will be lucky (FS 22) 

'& ' ' andhdle-h-ine-'' this you two will have to repair (NT 106:8) 
dindh-dne-' you better go there (and see) (NT 110: 10; 12:24) 
tah-dne\ tah-ine-' wait and you'll see 

nde-cd-l-ine^ I'll give in, I'll do it (after an argument) (WM) 
xago--ne-' (<C xago-ine- 7 goodbye (it's too bad you have to go) 

Compare the two sentences: 9 aj4 xado biftv tVxwi-senr' ndi 
xo'zdogo nd'desdzd "even though I suffered from the heat I have 
started (am going) back to Phoenix;" and 'ajd'ne' 7 xadoh bitte- 
ti'xwvsenv' ndi xo*zdog6' nd-de-cd-l "even though I may suffer with 
the heat nevertheless I shall go back to Phoenix." 

7.32. -tye*' future, neither speaker nor person addressed knows 
what will happen : 

xa-ci-ye-* who knows, let's see what happens, let's try it 
xa'H-ye-'' let's see what it will be 

koti'-ye^ (< kote-iye-') it will probably be this way (instead of the way 
you say) 

7.33. -ic, -c interrogative enclitic usually appended to first word of 
a sentence, -ic may be used with da\ interrogative particle introduc- 
ing sentence, or without it (cp. 11.90.) : 

din&tso-ic yinilyd, or da' dinUsoh-ic yinilyi is your name dinUaoh ? 

dd*c nil yd'dfe-dah {< do--ic) don't you like it ? 

da' nd-c ta-'o-riil (< nd-ic) have they (sheep) been dipped? have for- 

you they-been-moved-in-amonget ? 
ni da'dc is it a fact ? for-a-fact is-it ? 

7.34. -iyah alongside, beside, all . . ., in proportion to, enough, 

fitting The third person of the verb form is often used like a 

postposition, but the stem is conjugated as in 10.95i. Examples of 
the postpositional force of the third person follow: 

ciyah alongside, beside me 
bi-yah it is enough, it fits; it is used up 
do* biyahdah it is not enough, it doesn't fit 
dji bi-yah all day long 

b4-8o biyah it is worth a dollar; a dollar is enough 
di' 'frtsoh do* biyah-dah this overcoat does not fit him 
kin biyah-gi sitq the stick is lying beside the house; house beside-it-in- 
place long-obj.-lies 

7.35. -'oh grazing, missing by a hair; not reaching: 

bo* oh ric-Py he cannot afford it; missing-it he-measures-up 
M'oh ^dnisne-z he is taller than I; missing-him I-am-so-tall 
xake-de-'-oh missing his(4) tracks; next-to-him(4)-missing (SCE) 
td- yi-'oh-i-di dide-sni-' excluding those he motioned with his hand 
(EW 106:9) 

7.36.-7.41. BOUND FORMS 101 

7.36. -6a s awaiting, ahead of time; beyond limit, past limit: 

bi-ba y sidd I sit waiting for him (YMG 21) 
'al-ba* si-lei we two sit waiting for each other (YMG 21) 
bi-bd' -td-sta' the list is exhausted, it has gone beyond limit 
yi-ba? -tid'Stii he has counted beyond the limit 

ci-ba' yiltU'l run ahead of me; my-waiting you-will-trot (NT 22:20) 
n-ba? yicyol do* let me run ahead of you; you- waiting I-am-running 

7.37. -bq- because (see 11.112): 

'6i-bq* because of that ; for that reason 
di'-bq- because of this; for this reason 

7.38. -dah for example, among other things, such as, and so on, 
etc. This suffix is often used after a general noun to specify or 
exemplify other nouns : 

xa'Ctd6-Uihi-dah Talking God, for instance (BS) 
xahgo-dah some time or other (FS 3) 
xd-di-da-cy somewhere or other (FS 3) 
xd-di-da-cq y wherever is it (FS 3) 

tsi-dah tsin-dah ye-' edadji-lxa-l stones, for example, or sticks they(4) 
throw at it (scalp) (NT 300:2) 

7.39. -dah down, downward, moving through a shorter distance 
than na- (10.92.). This element seems like a postposition ; its opposite 
is sometimes dai, dei, deig, deigo "up, upward" : 

bi-dah H-go J I fell down off it 

y a-dah bitvn the trail drops down 

'ada-jniyf he(4) brought the load down 

'ada-nil I dropped several 

'adaycflt&d he jumped, ran down (FH) 

xazii yikd*' bi-dd-yd he came down off the ladder (FH) 

8o-dzil bi-dah goyah down the side of Mt. Taylor (NT 188: 11) 

tsiko'h gdya* xa* 'adah t6i-lyod he ran down into the canyon away from 

her(4) (NT 18:19) 
bi-dah gdya- yigd-l he is walking downhill (YMG 29; EW 120: 19) 
xa-dah downslope 

7.40. -dd-h (prog.) toward a moving object, facing, moving to- 
ward, meeting, moving in front of (cp. dd-in front of 5.42.) : 

bi-dd-h niyd I met, encountered him (YMG 23) 

yi-dd-h yd-UV he talked back to him (YMG 23, Ad 12/48: 15) 

niyol bi-dd'h-dji* facing the wind; wind moving-to-a-point-in-front- 

bi-dd'h-dji* dadzitsa-hfrgi in front of him was the place he longed (died) 

for (NT 28:11) 
to- xa-dd-h-dji' da'ayq right in front of him(4) they ate; merely in- 

front-of-him(4)-to-a-point they-are-eating (NT 24:13) 
cd-dd-h-djf counter-clockwise (NT 232:6) 

7.41. -dq,-' past, ago, last . . . ; from the time that. . . , since 

-d#'\ like -go 9 "forward, toward, future" (7.75.), seems not to be 

102 NAVAHO ORAMMAB 7.41.-7.45- 

suffixed to demonstrative and interrogative bound forms unless 
some other enclitic or postposition precedes it (cp. 7.105.) : 

na*ki na'xai*-dfy' > two years ago (FS 4) 

ct'-dfy* last summer 

y abin-d$-' earlier this morning 

dji-dfy ' yesterday 

xi-ndhfr-dtf,-' when he was alive (YMG 18) 

dilcin 8inili-" -dq^ dib6 didyal if you get hungry eat a sheep (FS 4) 

nil likcm-d^ ba> xdlne* if you like (the taste of) it, say so (FS 4) 

bi'so ne' 'o8d\--d4^ la? ncfto-nil in case you run out of money he will lend 

you some (FS 4) 
xd-dq^ ' d~d4' y -cp HI nazti* some sort of windbreak as they had in the 

past ; whatever-past there-past-possibly branches laid-in-a-circle 

(NT 48:9) 
dah'adilde-' -d4'* after they had started off, from the time they started 

forth (NT 206:16) 
fa* M&Vi nza--d$-' some distance back; just there at -a- distance-past 

(NT 50:27) 
to- ni-tlic-dfy-'' as soon as it (deer) has fallen; right after-it-has-fallen 

(NT 322:6) 

7.42. -de'nd in exchange for: 

bi-de-nd in exchange for it 

'6i bi-de-nd y add-h cidi-gfrl in exchange for this (feather) carry me back 
down (EW 120:10) 

ddhwi-c bi-de-nd ncmilnic how much do you get for your work ? how- 
much in-exchange-for-it do-you-work 

7.43. -d4*' from a point toward speaker and person addressed, 
along the way from, from the time that ; with numerals "sides" : 

7 d*-d4- y from over there (remote) ^ 

'a-rf£*' nd-ka they pi. were due back; from-here they-come-baok 

kfrxati'Cty''' from where he lived 

xoc-d4*\ xaC'd4^ from where (he came) 

bitid-h-d^' 1 from the very beginning (of time) (NT 62:3) 

biUi-d^ on the upper side; from-over-it (NT 48:21) 

bidiitnd-d$-' from the other side (NT 124: 19; cp. NT 84:24) 

di*-d4'' four sides 

do- td* 'dni-di-dfy* xani'dah the lore is not from recent times (NT 76 : 12) 

7.44. -di at, in a closely defined area: 

'dlta'-di at school 
MH*di in place over there 
ko~di in place here 
xo-yan-di at home 
ndxo-kga-di at the north (BS) 

7.46. -di times: 

df'-di four times 
ria-ki-di twice 
lah-di-dah at least once 
ddkwi-'di-ci* however many times 

7.46.-7.50. BOUND FORMS 103 

7.46. -d& also, and, too, including: 

di'-do* these also 

djoge'-dd* t\* in detail also let us examine it 
cij&i-df my father too (NT 42 : 1) 

xa'at6-d4'cq*'d6' from where will there be another; wherever -from- 

7.47. -do- and then, then on to . . ., also. The meaning of this 
suffix is the same as that of -do\ but it usually is suffixed to a second 
statement, -do' being used first and pointing to an idea beyond the 
one made, whereas -do- points to a second or later utterance: 

fida'dji-Uoh-do- td^dko n^di-lde-' they(4) smoked and they rose at once 

(NT 188:27) 
yitdj,' sodo-lzin-do* yit6f xo-td'lgo when he had prayed and sung against 

them (NT 274:11) 
dziltsyd4^ -do* biy$'g6*-d6> bdxdtis from the base of the mountain and 

on to the top and over it (NT 336: 12) 

7.48. -do* from a point away from the actor and speaker; in any 
direction away from speaker and person addressed : 

'd'-dd' from there, from then on 

yaWalni'-do' from the center inside (house) 

ntsi-fd'-do- from the top of your head 

*a*-do*-ya> from there under 

taidd-'-do- dahdzizdd-h on the edge of the rock he(4) sat (NT 42:6) 

7.49. -to? (stat.) between: 

tsS bi-ta?-gi sSzf I am standing between the rocks; rocks in-place- 

between I-am-standing 
to-ta? Between-the-waters (place name) 

'oi-to* lizi'tigo alternating they stood; each-other-between standing 
'dtcfrc-ta' septum ; nose-peculiar-to-between 
td* do* bi-ta'-i-go- there was no space between them ; not between-them- 

forward(NT 32:4) 
to* ta* bi'td'-go* ndjiyd he merely wandered from place to place; merely 

just moving-between-them he(4)-moves-about (NT 24:2) 

7.50. -tah (prog.) among, in any direction from a fixed point: 

kin-tah town; masonry -houses-among 

xo'-tah town; place-among 

ciyi-l bi-tah it is among my belongings 

foe-tali hogan floor; ground -peculiar-to-among 

bi-ta--cdh (< tah-yi-) I am going amongstthem 

ta'-rii-l mush; separate-obj.-are-put-in-amongst 

ta'-'o-rlil they (sheep) have been dipped; in-amongst-they-have-been 

bi-ya-* -tah-dtj' y out of his feathers; his-body-hair-amongst-from (NT 

477, n. 20) 

104 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.51.-7.56. 

7.51. -id out of place, slightly irregular: 

bi-td di't$ round object is out of place; it is untrue, it has been misinter- 
preted (AB); it (round obj.) just missed target, point aimed for 


ci-td xosidHti^ I heard a bare rumor (WM) 
bi-td daxodizni-zgis he(4) just misses being crazy (WM) 
td-jdini-tcq-fygo- about how he(4) had been chased; out-of -place he(4)- 
was-chased (NT 64: 17) ; to-places-where-he(4)-sought-refuge (WM) 

7.52. 4is (prog.) over to the other side, moving over, omitting, 
skipping : 

dzil bi-tis do-gd-l he will go over to the other side of the mountain; 

mountain over-it he-will-go 
tsidi- si-tis yifa' the bird is flying past (over) me 
fcj bi-tis yo'dlf earthen spillway; earth over-it it-flows-onward 
naxasdzd^n ^alni-gi xodzdigi- bd'-tis darii-VS-l we sailed over the equator ; 

the-place-that-is-marked-at-the-earth-center over-against-it-we- 

y adzd-tis shin 
da* bi-tis-go-cq' whatever may be omitted 

7.53. '-tah pause, interval, intermission, meanwhile, meantime, 

wait (cp. 4.2 1.): 

^d-tah td* kwe*6 wait right here 

*d-fdh-i-go in a little while 

ci-ta x6l$ I still have some; my -pause there-is (NT 60:23) (Cp. tsi 
ti&atty tah bidaigi at a place a short distance above Rock-ledge- 

7.54. -nah, -nqh arranged over it, draped o ■;-:■ it (as towel hung 
over a line), leaning against: 

yinq-h dahnd-ne'Ztf- Id again he lay over it (knoll) (NT 94:24) 
yi-nah-dji 7 ts&ya-go dahne r ztf over it he lay prone (NT 94:20) 
kin bi-nah-djV s4dd I sit leaning against the house 
bi-nah-dji* ninVa'h put a round obj. against it 

7.55. -7wr (stat.) around a fixed point : 

bi-na- xodiyin things around it (him) are holy 

kin bi-ncf-go* xojoni beauty extends around the house; house around- 
it-onward it-is-beautiful 

to bi-na* nanilnic work on dam; water around-it there-is-working 

dzil bi-na* around the mountain (NT 22 : 21) 

xaya'-na* ndlyol it (turkey) cust. ran around his(4) feet; around-under- 
him(4) it-cust.-ran (NT 26:2) 

J altso na*ni"nlk#'go when it was fully light; all night-having -passed- 
around (NT 44:3) 

7.56. -ndkd, -nikd through, penetrating: * 

to bi-ndkd M% water flows through it (YMG 23) 'v> Jj 
yi-ndkd-'fo-nil he will bore through it (YMG 23) 

7.56.-7.63. bound forms 105 

tozia bi-ndkd dini'V you are looking through the glass (tumbler) 
bi-ndkd-dfr* ndit\-hgo sit\ peeping through the layers he lay; from- 

through-them peeping he-lay (NT 22:24) 
cifiba-l do- to bi-ndkdo-ge-h Wdte-go- 'vela- I made my tent proof against 

leaking (FS 19) 

7.57. -ne\ -n£ (stat.) behind, back of; back (noun): 

bi-ne' his back, behind him 

dzil bi-ne'-di at a place behind the mountain 

tsin bi-ne'-dfr* sizf I am standing behind the tree; tree from-the- 

direction-behind-it I-am-standing 
tsin xoyan bi-ne'-dji* 'Vdh the stick projects at a point behind the house 

7.58. -nvna- because, for the reason that, on account of ...*s 
opposition (cp. 11.113.): 

xd'dtvc bi-nvna* yiniyd why have you come ? what because-of-ityou- 

xo-ni-na- because of things (NT 142:26) 

7.59. -ni'kd against . . . , in opposition to: 

bi-ni>kd ydMtV you are talking him into it (WM), you are talking 

against him (YMG 24) 
bi-ni'kd 'defy I am getting him into it (bet), I am getting him interested 

in it, I am getting him to compromise 

7.60. -niye because of . . . , the reason for . . . , the purpose of . . . 
(with no idea of opposition, cp. 11.114.) : 

'a-ni-yi indictment; reason-for-something 
ni-ni-yi because of you 

xcfdti'C bi-niyi why ? because-of-what (YMG 24) 

bi'c bi-ni-yi nanlnic you are working to get money ; money the-purpose- 
of-it you-are-working 

7.61. -ni into it, out of . . . , but not all the way, wedged in, stick- 
ing out of ... : 

t8& bi~ni da'aja-j the rock is eroded, worn into, worn partly away 

(YMG 24) 
Myahgo bini-lyol (< bi-ni-yi--pf.) it (as bullet) ran so far in it (ashand, 

body) (WM) 

7.62. -yah under, below (cp. yah'a-into enclosure): 

M£i yo-yah-go there down below he rolled toward (NT 132: 14) 

tse-ko-h go-yah down in the canyon (NT 150:28) 

tsiyi* bidd-' go-yah down under the canyon rim (NT 150:27) 

tsiyV biko*h go-yah on down into the bottom of the canyon (NT 132 : 20) 

7.63. -yah underneath supporting, propping: 

bi-yah ni-'a-h put brace underneath; under-supporting-it move-round- 

obj.-to-end (YMG 25) 
kin tsin bi-yah dani^dh timbers support the house; house timbers. 

under-supporting they-stand-uprjght (YM 31) 

106 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 7.64.-7.68. 

7.64. -ya* (< -yah under-rA into) in under, below, beneath: 

bi*ya*-di 'e v underclothes; under-him-in-place clothes 

bi-ya--gi at a place underneath (a hill) (NT 188: 17) 

xa-ya* nHlka" it (turkey) spread (its wing) under him(4) (NT 26:22) 

xa-ya--na- nd-lyol it (turkey) would run around under him(4) around- 

under-him(4) it-cust.-ran (NT 26:2) 
ts6-ya*-gi at a place underneath the rock (NT 192 : 7) 
isi bi-ya--dji-go yicd-l I am walking along under the rock; rock under- 
its-side-being I-am-walking-prog. (YMG 25) 
bi-ya'-tM'n lower jaw, mandible; under-bone-attached 
ko-ycb'-yic dodvl can it be down there? (WE) 
beddlii bi-ycf-d4 ,J xasisria I crawled out from under the blanket 
tsidi' ci-ya'-gi yita' a bird is flying below me 
yd-ya- nzini Sky Pillars (myth,); those-that-stand-under-the-sky 

-ya- may mean "life span, end of life:" 

ci-ya* xazli^ my life 

ci-ya* 'axo'ldo my end is nearing (NT 354:20) 

7.65. -yayah behind, hidden by ... : 

'asdzfy' Wi* tsi' -ycfyah-d^-' tcilyod a strange woman ran out from behind 
a rock; woman strange rock-behind-from she-ran-out (EW 118:23) 
(same as tse bine'd^ [WM]) 

bi-ya*yah *and-lyod she ran back behind it (rock) (EW 118:25) 

7.66. -gi (stat.) at, in a space less closely circumscribed than -di, 
at an indefinite place : 

tsintdh-gi in the woods; trees-among-in 
bidd-'-gi at a place on top of the canyon; its-rim- at 
bildtah-gi at its tip, top, summit 

dd'dtteh bibq-h~gi cayan my house is at the edge of the cornpatch ; corn- 
patch its-border-at my-house-is 
biya-gi under the hill (NT 188 : 17) 
tseya'-gi under the rock (NT 192:7) 
ts6 xa-lt&'l-gi at Rock-chipped-out (NT 204:9) 

7.67. -gi suffixed to the verb means "how to, the art of . . ." 


y atid'-gi yina*ciniltin she is teaching me how to weave; at-weaving-she- 

na'be-ho biza*d be- ydlti'-gi yina-dne'Ztfy* he taught me to speak Nava- 
ho ; Navaho its-word at-speaking with-it he-instructed-me 

7.68. -gi 'dte'-go 'dfe-go like, resembling in character and behavior, 
behaving as . . . : 

ni-gi 'dte-go cil xoyfr* like you I am lazy; you-like with-me there-is- 

td* y 6i-gi ^atfrgo that way; just that-like-being 

td- lahd-gi 'dte-go in the same way; just one-like being (NT 44:22) 
n£6cdja- y ^dUMgv-gi 'dte 'it&o (< 'dti'-go) he was becoming just like the 

owl (NT 40:18) 
bq-hd-gi "itfygo (< J dt$*go) being in a bad mood, evil being-like (NT 


7.68.-7.75. BOUND FORMS 107 

td- 'oxayoi 'odddhi-gi HU-go (< 'atfrgo) as if many (people) were walking 
(NT 44:1) 

7.69. -go relatively free syntactic particle expresses various kinds 
of subordination — ". . .ing, as . . . was . . .ing, while . . .ing" (see 

na-ki-go ca* nini'l give me two; two-being move-plural-obj.-to-me 
tspl-go hurry, do it quickly; hurry -being 

7.70. -go may be suffixed to verbs: 

'ani'-go saying so, speaking thus 
yicd-l-go as I go along 

7.71. -goh may be suffixed to bound forms : 

'& be--go nd-8 di'kah with that we shall go forward, progress; that 

with-it-being forward we-shall-start-to-go 
'dtahi-go in a little while; there-remote-that-which-is-a-pause-being 
na- cini'-goh bini-na- because I was worried about you; for-you my- 

mind-being because-of-it 
to siyinigi- bideidji-go tdiniyd I went above a body of water; water 

that-which-lay-confined on-the-upper-side-being I-went-out (YM 

dei-go dinVp* look upward (YMG 26) 

, 7.72. -go 'ate, or -go xaz'd with future verb form, "can, be able to; 
it is that" : 

di- ta4 dahdidi-'d-l-go y df4 (zaz'tf.) I can lift this rock 

nilieh dido-dle-l-go 'die (xaz'fy he can beat you (fighting); in-your-way 

he-will-do-being it-is 
naxodo-ltyl-go 'df6 (xaz'4) it will surely rain; that-it-rain it-is 

7.73. -go-da 'ate (equivalent to ca'cin nisin) possibly, it may; 
approximately-it-is (FS 11; cp. 11.109.): 

nariijo-jgo* do-gd'l-goda 'd£6 he may go to Gallup; Gallup-to he-will-go- 
naxodo-Uyl-goda *dt& it may rain 

7.74. -go-dah about, approximately (FS 11): 

t&*-goda ca- nini-l give me about three (you decide the exact number) 
HH-^'-godah ca- di-nd'l come to see me about sunset; sunset-about 

to-rae you-will-come 
'e'e'a-h-goda about when the sun was setting (NT 312:4) 

7.76. -go* (prog.) in the general direction of, in the future, -go* 
seems to be an enclitic : it may be suffixed to a noun, but I have 
never found it with a demonstrative pronoun, or with a possessive 
prefix unless another element intervenes : 

t6'-go-, iohd' to the water 
narlijcji-gd' to Gallup 

108 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.75.-7.79. 

'6-bq- bini'di nixiiah-go- therefore let us have them; for-this-reason 

let-it-be among-us-future 
td- bendcnj-hi-go- (whatever) I shall (may) remember 
de-ydhd-go- do- cil bi-xozindah I don't know where he is going; where- 

he-started-for I-don't-know 
td- 'altsoni biyi'-gd- having to do everything for himself (NT 66 : 1) 

7.76. -grd- (stat.) on, in position: 

nV-go- a&t\ I am lying on the ground, floor 
yikd-'-go- na-ta' it (bird) is flying about above him 
dzil-gd' na-cdh I am walking about in the mountains 
na-daj*-* bitah-gd- na-ndh you are walking about in the corn; corn in- 
amongst-it you-are-walking-about 

7.77. -kd, -xd after, reaching for (YMG 23): 

bi-kd 'dni he is calling to him (to get attention); after-him there-is- 

ci-kd 'ado-lyol he will help me; after-me he- will-run 
bi-kd ditci-d reach for it (YM 34) 
xa-'ih Id do- tc*i- yi-kd 'd-tf-dah (wondering) how to overcome him; 

something-question after-him she-might-not-do-in-vain (WE) 
t66'h yi-kd nofagij he probed; in-vain after-it he-stuck-forked-obj.- 

ni-kd 'dnde-cyol I will help you; after-you I-will-run-thus-cust. 
d-kd naxadld- Id I found out that the ceremony was for me; after-me 

ceremony -was-being-sung to-be-sure (FS 15) 

7.78. -M- y (stat.) on touching, on having contact with; on top, the 
top side of surface ; on record, "on the books," in the paper, in print : 

yas-kd-' snow crust 

naxo-kd-* dind earth people 

tsidi- ci-kd-' na-ndtah the bird is flying about above me 

xo-yan bi-kd-' } ~gi in place on the dwelling 

bi-kd-'' top side, on it, on the record, in the book, newspaper, in print; 

its skin (NT 38:26) 
bi-kd' do- credit it; on-the-record let-it-be 
bi-kd'-d^-' at the top (of tree); its-top-from (NT 50: 18) 
to bi-kd-'-dj^ to the top of the water; water its-surface-to-a-point 

(NT 26:23) 
id- tsi'il-kd-'-go there being a complete rock surface (NT 234:29) 

7.79. -ki' J (prog.) behind, in . . .'s footsteps; track, footprint. We 
have already noted the impossibility of classifying -&e*' (4.11.). It 
behaves like a postposition in some cases — this is the reason it is 
included here. Again it seems clearly to be a noun, and yet again the 
"noun" or the "possessed noun" has verbal prefixes: 

bi-ki-' yicd-l I am walking along behind him 
bi-ki'-d^ next, next to (behind) him; from-. . . 's-track 
na-bi-ke'-* there were tracks here and there (NT 130:24) 
xode-'kd-' a footprint was there 

td- 'alki-' yo-lkd-lgo one night after the other; just one-after-the-other 
nights-passing (NT 40:29) 

7.79.-7.84. bound forms 109 

'alkfr* na-'a-ci- One-follows-the-other (deities) ; one-after-the-other the- 
particular-two -who -walk-about 

7.80. -U4'h (prog.) motion against colliding with (cp. 7.40, 7.87, 

bitcidi kin yi-ttfyh bit yilyod his car ran into the house; his-car house 

colliding-with-it it-ran-to-end 
tcidi 'al-kd-h yilyod-gi headon collision; place-where-cars-collided- 

\%w&-' bic yi-M-h do-ltcid the baby ran against the knife; baby knife 

in-collision -with-it it-was-touched 
tai bi-Ud'h de-ctd-lgo ciM-cgan xa-Ug' when I stumbled against the rock 

I broke ray toenail 
tain bi-Uq-h yicyod I ran into a tree (WM) 

7.81. -Keh according to. . ., in ... manner, way: 

bi-keh-go, bi-keho according to it, him, his way ; guiding . . . , being . . . 's 

guide (NT 44:8; 48:4) 
bin% > bi-fteh according to his ideas; his-mind according-to-it (YMG 22) 
belagd-na-Keh-go in a white man's way 
na*kai'Heh-dji ydlti* he is speaking Spanish; according-to- Spanish-side 

xack4he--Ueh-go nixitfy ydlti' he "told us off, bawled us out," reprimand- 
ed us; according-to-scolder's-way to-us he-spoke 
biki-keh-go- , bite-keho- follow him; (move)-in-the-direction-of-his- 

id* nindxdxd-h bitteh "dko ndxo-fi'h every year it happens that way; 

just winter-passes-to-end-cust. according-to-it so-it-happens-cust. 

(YM 162) 
bi*4- y tei Ma-J&sh only her dress had been arrow-pricked; her-garment 

only arrow-according-to (NT 66:7) 
cidji ci-ke xol§* do- my side will speak my way; my -side according-to- 

me it-is will-be (NT 68:9) 

7.82. -lie- on account of, because (YMG 28) : 

bi-ke* bil xoyi-'' he dreads it; because-of-it he-is-weakened 

bi-ke f dinicni'h I am irritated because of it, at him 

bi-Ue' nisidzidzd he was panic-stricken because of it; because-of-it it- 

bike-jditlah on account of it he(4) was numb (stunned) 
yi-Ue* bq- daxaz'$ on account of it he is ill; 

7.83. -M, -ISeh for value, reward, cost, guarantee, exchange, pay, 
compensation (cp. -de'na) : 

bi*8o bi-166 nanilnic you are working for wages (YMG 23) 

bi-Uih value, cost, measure, size, exchange 

bi-Mh-l royalty; that -which -is-exchanged 

ne'zna'-di-Jiih sild one million; ten-times-value it-lies-ropelike 

'ayahkini biM in exchange for the Hopi (NT 276:21) 

7.84. -Hi, -Uih (stat.) over, above (WM "pressing on") (cp. -M-'): 

isi bi-Ui dahsidd I am sitting on a rock; rock on-it I-am-sitting-on 
dzil bi~kih over the mountain 

110 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.84.-7. 87a, 

'al-Ui-dji' toward each other (drive them) (NT 152:11) 

bi-Ui-d^ de'sUid there was a knoll on the upper side of it (deer) ; over- 
it-side (NT 48:21) 

xa-Mi niiltih he covered him(4); over-him(4) he-cust.-caused-covering- 
it (NT 28:21) 

ci-Ui naxadld I am being sung over; over-me ceremony-is-being-sung 
(FS 15) 

xa-Hi-gi at a place above him(4) 

id bi-tti xoted it(rock) was just level with ground; just over-it place- 
was-wide (NT 40:14) 

7.85. -ya away from by force: 

'a-ya-'ilyi theft, larceny 

'al-ya didi'tac let's race; from-each-other-forcefully we-two-shall-start- 

bi-ya nicid I took round obj. from him by force; from -him -forcefully 

dibi tiizi bil *<d-ya niU\ I gave a sheep in exchange for a goat ; sheep goat 

with-it forcefully-away-from-each-other-I-moved-animate-obj . 

7.86. -yd through, piercing, penetrating hole (cp. 7.56.): 

tsfc-yd through the rock (natural sandstone arch) : rock-through 
bi-yd xo'dzfy it is perforated, he hollowed it (out); through-it place-is- 

hollowed (NT 24:22) 
yi-yd do-cic he will poke a hole through it; through-it he-will-poke 
'anlii* bi-yd nicrta' I crawled through a hole in the fence : fence through- 
it I-crawled-back 
tsi-yd-'iiiidini' , tst-yd^dindiwi* rock crystal ;the-particular-one-through- 

fcr ba-yd 'oade^ group just passed by (place) (NT 208:13) 

7.87. -yy-h (stat.) attached in front of (cp. 7.40, 7.80, 7.99.): 

If-* tsina'bq'8 yi-yfyh dido-lti-l he will hitch the horse to the wagon; 

horse wagon in-front-attached-to-it he-will-start-a-live-obj. -moving 

(YM 27) 
If-' tsina-bq-8 bi-y#-h d6zf the horse is harnessed to the wagon; horse 

wagon in-front-attached-to-it it-is-standing (YM 27) 
bi-yq-h 'adizo-h continue that line 

7.87a. -yi* (stat.) inside, at a point within, within but not a part of ; 
out from inside of ... ; interior (YM 27). -yi' seems to mean "inside 
a place with an opening or exit" in distinction to -r' "completely 
within" : 

'd-yi'-i pluck, throat; something-that-is-inside 

'a-y^ , -d^• , dil hemorrhage; from-someone's-throat blood 

'add-yi\ 'ayd-yi* someone's throat; in-front-inside 

'aniti* bi-yi* bfrgaci- na-kai the cattle are inside the fence; inside-it 

cattle move-about 
td-yi* subterranean waters (YME 14) 

tai-yx* canyon, Canyon de Chelley (and other canyons) ; rocks-inside 
so' bi-yi' na-zniligi- stars scattered about in the sky; those-which-are- 

stars-lying-about-separately-in-it (NT 62:4) 
'dsa' bi-yi'-d^ to xd-Jc4 I dipped water out of the jar; jar in-it-from 

water I-moved-contained-substance-out (YM 109; NT 16:16) 

7.87a.-7.92. BOUND FORMS 111 

td* bi-yV'djf find-da-sdli^ they gave up (evil thoughts); merely to-a- 
point-within they-became-back-again (NT 66 : 28) 

td- 'altsoni bi-yi*-g6- having (to do) everything for himself; just every- 
thing inside-him-future (NT 66:1) 

td' bini'-yi'-i-gi (women) who within themselves; just their-minds- 
within-the-ones-in-place (NT 254:20) 

7.88. ~tse first, earlier in time: 

td^ bi-tsi na'cd I am older than he; just before-him I-go-about 
"d-tsi first, before 

'al-tsi first, one ahead of the other; reciprocally -first 
bi-H-tai (< bVdtsi) ci'tvjtci I am older than he; ahead-of-him I-was- 

7.89. -tsi one step in front, in front of, immediately in front of: 

ni-tsi-dji* na-cd I am older than you; toward-a-point in-front-of-you 

td' bi~t8%-dji* niyd I arrived just before him; just at-a-point-before-him 

I-arrived (cp. bi-tti-dji* afterward) 
xa-tai-dz^ he stood in front of him(4); in-front-of-him(4)-he-stood 

(NT 186:12) 

7.90. -U& (prog.) from, away from: 

'ol-tid 'asdzoh two-forked; from-each-other something-is-marked 
'al-tid dasdzoh mass divided into more than two parts; from-one- 

another they-are-marked 
y al-tid ni'td'j we two separated; from-each-other we-two-went 
bi-tSd niyd I left him; from-him I -went 

7.91. -tiqr, -Ua* avoid, keep away from because of antagonism 
(cp. tid- ' 'irritable, peevish, angry, ill-tempered, wishing evil"): 

'al-tdq* na-'a^c they two are antagonistic; avoiding-each-other they- 

bi-tity xastiH* Hti he is the one to be avoided ; avoiding-him that-which- 

is-respectful it-is-thus 
td' xa-tdq- xoddoh the distance between them was increasing; just 

from-them(4) space-increased (NT 62:17) 

7.92. -tiq,-' radiating from, outward, diverging from; against . . . 's 
wishes, opposing (YMG 25, WM). This postposition often expresses 
personal feeling: 

td- 'al-tSfr* danlpgo they pi. having different opinions; just from-one- 

another they -being 
si-tSfy'* (< d-t£4'*) yo-ndodza* he might leave me against my wishes; 

from-me he-might-go-back (NT 40:23) 
bitsi-' *a&-tS$'*-djl on both sides of his head against his wishes (NT 

bi-c bi-t4$--d6' *alya- it is made of iron; metal deriving-from-it it-is-made 

(same as b6*c bi-tify-d^ *alya-) 
'al-tSq,'-cbji nnini-l lay them in radiating fashion; radiating-from-one- 

another-sides lay-them 

112 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.92.-7.96. 

^al-ti<$>'h-dj% dahdadjvdca' on both sides he tied it here and there (NT 

citcidi 8%-tiqS yitctf my car broke down against my wishes; my -car 

opposing-me got ruined (FH) 
bi-tfy-* Uijnigij he(4) cut it away; angrily he(4)-cut-it-off (NT 18:3) 
bi-tit^^ yah'adizno-dzd leaving it (turkey) against his wishes, he(4) went 

in (cautiously) (NT 28:24) 

7.93. -c, -cq? interrogative, prefixed to the first word of the 
sentence; it is not used with da 9 the introductory interrogative 
word (11.89, 11.91.), or in place of it, as is -ic (11.90.): 

xdi-c, or xdi-cq' *dtf, who is he ? 

di*c or di--cq' xa'dti 'dfi what is this ? 

xd'gd'-cq? or xd'gd'-c diniyd where are you going? 

xd'dti-cq' or xa'dM'-c ninizin what do you want ? 

ci-cq? how about me ? 

xcf-cq' or xa'-c yinidza* what happened to you? how did it (injury) 

happen to you ? 
nimfy-cq? where is your mother ? 
djan-cq' where is John ? 
Ui-d^^-cq' xa* yinitj-d what did you do last night ? what happened to 

you last night (that you did not turn up) ? night-past-interrogative 


7.94. -c/- probably, it must have been (FS 25). This enclitic is 
suffixed to interrogative pronominal complexes to denote "what- 
ever, however, wherever" and the like: 

td'ci* it is doubtful 

xa'dfi-cj- whatever it may be 

yiakd*go naxodo-Ui-l-cp it will probably rain tomorrow, it may rain 

xa'-cp n$-V4'* nd-x&i-dq^ a number of years ago ; however total-number 


7.95. -dji\ -dji' (prog.) up to a point, as far as, toward definite 
point, at definite time (FS 14): 

'aiUi-dji' toward each other (NT 152:11) 
Ve'a'/t-cfyV to a point at the west 

£d- be'estid'-dji' even to the ones (babies) just laced in their cradleboards 
ndnisdz&'-dji* until I return 

ty-dji* xa* de-syod he ran from her(4) in the opposite direction ; reverse- 
direction from-her(4) he-ran (NT 18:8) 
nnd'iiKpz-dJi' toward where it (poker) fell (NT 48: 11) 

7.96. -dji on the side of, in the direction of: 

cila J nicrid'-dji-yigi', or nicrind-'dji'-gi' my right hand; my-hand the- 

one-which-is-on-the-right-side (YMG 20) 
'e'e'a-h-dji-yC- the one aforementioned at the west side 
na > a£oe* bikq?-dji xatd-l Male Shooting Chant; shooting-concerning 

male-its-side chant 
nlt6i-dji bikq'-dji 'di xatd'l Male Wind Chant; wind -side male-its-side 

that chant (WE) 

7.97.-7.101. BOTXND FOBMS 113 

7.97. -ted beyond spatial capacity, over rim, out of bounds: 

*$•' bi-tcd >a-ljod horses moved off (NT 390: 12) 

#•' bi-tcd-iljol mass of horses (over ridge) (NT 39: 10) 

7.98. -tdah (prog.) at, off to restricted space (AB, YMG 21). (WM 
thinks -tdah is equivalent to -t6j?) : 

bi-t6ah zode-cke-l I shall scold him (cp. NT 34: 19) 

nixi-tdah xocke-d he scolded us 

xdni* xol tda-'e-lyod his(4) mind left him(4); his(4)-mind with-him(4) 

it-ran- off 
t6a- diyd I went off into restricted place 
"altdah bfrlne* he is chopping it apart (FH) 

7.99. -td$-\ -tdtf-h moving in front of, moving as an obstruction, 
moving in . . . 's way ; interceding for . . . , protecting . . . : 

"a-ttq-h obstruction, protection; something-in-front 
bi-td$-h sdzi I am standing in his way; him-in-front-of I-stand 
ci-tdd-h na-ydh he protects me; moving-in-front-of-me he-goes-about 
'd-td^-h sodizin prayer for self -protection ; in-front-of-self prayer 
'd-t64'h najdi-lge'd he(4) pushed it (bow) as self-protection down in 

(ground); self -protecting he(4)-drove-it-down (NT 36:3) 
ci-tdd^ ndidi-dd-l rise up to protect me (Pr 58:5) 
'6i bi-tdfyh moving in front of that (woodpile) (NT 324:9) 

7.100. -tdic on opposite sides, on both sides, converging: 

dibdntsa- bitdidjigo yo-tdic-dji on both sides of dibintsa- (mountain) 

(NT 198:15) 
'al-tdic-dji so-zi one of you stand on each side (WM, cp. NT 326 : 26) 
na-kitdd-da yitffrgo 'al-tdic-i- xastfy yilti there were twelve, six on each 

side (WM, FH, FW 277, n. 134) 
kin aa'dni ydc-tdic-d^-' yigd-l from this side he is walking between the 

house and us (WM) 

7.101. -td$ (prog.) moving toward but not necessarily all the way, 
moving in the direction of ... : 

bi-tty ydcti* I am talking to him 

xa-tdf sodo-lzin he prayed against them (4) (NT 274: 11, 21) 

8ct'd 'al-tdi* y idayi-8riil they quarreled ; words toward-each other-they- 

flung-rep. (NT 68:10) 
dzU bi-tty xo'ltyl it is raining toward the mountain; mountain in-the- 

direction-of-it it-is-raining-prog. 
*d4dj' dSidildjahgo making a fire for herself 
xa-tdtf dahnd"niite y it (snake) rushed at him again; toward-him(4) it- 

darted-forth-again (NT 36:9) 
xa*ci~ tizah't&p on for some distance; however far -toward (NT 32:6) 
'at-tdi* y ada*z i d (poles) extend toward each other, close it (roof) (NT 

^al-td^ 'dtido'lni'l they (schools) will be closed; toward-each-other 

thus-will-be-done-back (FH) 
'dko dd y dkeh$* bil y dt*t6f ndaxodctioh so the fields kept getting choked 

with (weeds); so fields-mentioned with-them toward-each-other 

cust.-places-became-bushy (choked) 

114 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.101.-7.103. 

'al-tdj? HU*h he is closing the envelope, French window (cp. J axa* 

yiniU'h "he is folding the paper" [WM]) 
td< 7 altso 'cd-tdf ko dadjile'go after folding all (the masks); just all 

closed so when-he(4)-arranged-them (NT 256: 16) 
'asdzani yil Hl-tdf (< 'al-tdj') sizihi-ni' the woman who faces him 

(NT 278:3) 

7.102. -Id'h beyond, more than; however ... likes, go ahead 
according to . . . 's wish (cp. 9.4) : 

ni-ld'h just as you like, do it your way / 

bi-ld-k 'dnimfrz I am taller than he; more-than-he I-am-so-tall 

7.103. -I accompaniment, with, along with. The postposition -I is 
to be differentiated from -e* "with instrumental." Generally -e' 
refers to concrete objects, though it may refer back to a whole 
ceremony or procedure, whereas 4 refers to persons, behavior, and 
emotions. Either or both together may be a part of idioms in which 
the literal meaning is entirely lost : 

&L"n,-l with song 

tca--l with tears, weeping (tcah "crying") 

dlo'-l with laughter (dloh "laughter") 

nxi-l tdide-c'd-l I shall tell you two ; with-you-two I-shall-speak-out (BS) 

xa'dtt'dah ye* xo-l xalni whatever things one is told; whatever by- 

means-of-it accompanying-one(4) things-are-communicated 
xo-l xa-fd-j he(4) led him to them(4) ; with-him(4) they-two-went-to- 

ni-l b&*xodo*z%'l you will understand ; with-you there-will-be-knowledge- 

'ddi-l dahicfy I am pinning my clothes; with-self I-am-moving-long- 

ci-l yd* dU I am pleased, I like it; with-me it-is-good 
ci-l x$j§ things are going well with me; with-me things-are satisfactory 
do* bi-l yd* ddd'cQ-dah they were angry; not with-them they-were- 

dini bi-l ninidjd- 9 the people surrounded him, closed in on him; people 

with-him crowd-moved-to-end 
l&tcq^i bi-l narlicka-d I am out herding with my dog; dog with-it I-am- 

spreading-about-beyond (YM 29) 
le-j xo-l dayihfylo' they ground his flesh up with the sand; sand with- 

him(4) they-ground-also (WE) 
yi-l 'axidi-dd he has great assurance; with-it he-starts-to-go-together 

bi-l disdzi-h I am coughing it out of my windpipe; with-it I-am- 

bi-l dictlo-fa I am lacing it; with-it I-am-starting-to-tie 
bi-l xodigiz it seems twisted, crooked to him; with-him things-are- 
ci-l niznilne' pound me; with-me cause-round-obj.-to-move-away-to- 

end (WE) 
i ddi-l xo-lb6*j he brought serious trouble on himself; with-self things- 

gdlijv *asa*'' yi-l yilyol skunk ran carrying bucket; skunk container 

with-it he- was -running (NT 20:12) 
bi-l dzidiltlah oil your hair ; with-it cause-greasing-away 

7.104.-7.108. bound forms 115 

7.104-7.116. Compounding of Postpositions and Enclitics 

7.104. In spite of the fact that syntactic and locative suffixes or 
enclitics are not completely distinctive, the position of such elements 
seems to indicate some differentiation of categories. Syntactic 
elements follow postpositional elements in compounds, although 
more than one of either kind may be compounded (7.114.). Post- 
positions are usually suffixed to a free or bound form — noun, pos- 
sessive (objective) pronoun, locative. They may be followed by 
syntactic elements in the same compound, as bi-tis-go-cq 9 (bi-B 
poss.-^s-moving over-go- general subordination-cq'-interrogative) 
"(whatever things) may have been omitted." 

7.105. It may mean something in the determination of categories 
that the following have not been found directly suffixed to a pos- 
sessive pronoun: -dah * 'for example, etc.;" -d$ ,y "from a definite 
point toward speaker;" -di "in place, at;" -do* "from an indefinite 
point toward speaker, away from actor;" -gi "in place, at;" -go* 
(prog.) "toward an indefinite destination, future;" ~go r (stat.) "on, 
in position;" -dji "side" (one of two opposed sides). 

7.106. The only examples where such a suffix immediately follows 
a pronoun are of the type : cidji ciUe xglg do' "(those on) my side will 
speak my way; I-side according-to-me are it-will-be" (NT 68:9); 
xo-do- bind-cr-dji ke-xodjiti "opposite-them(4) their spouses they(4) 
lived; they(4)-from their-partners-side they lived" (NT 102:9). 
Note that -dji is here suffixed to the independent rather than to the 
possessive pronoun. Perhaps there is a categorical difference be- 
tween the two types of elements. It is difficult to test this problem 
since the meanings of the elements in the class that is not suffixed 
to the possessives are incompatible with the personal pronouns — 
they describe things and places rather than persons. 

7.107. By definition postpositions may be suffixed to free or 
bound forms : 

to-ta' Between-the-waters (place name) (YMG 25) 
tsi-ta? canyon mouth; rocks-between 

tsi-tah kin house-among-the-rocks (name of San Ildefonso pueblo) 
tsi-na* to Senatoa; around-rock water 
tsi-yV canyon; rocks-in 
tain-pa* underneath the tree 
^a-'di in place there near you 

J e'e'a t h-dji-g6- westward ;west-to-a-point-toward(cp.VeVA&^a--d;i-r^ 
in the far west; west underneath -it-to-a-point- being) 

7.108. Postpositions are often suffixed to possessive-objective 
bound pronouns to modify words similar to those above; this form 

9 Reichard 


NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.108.-7.112. 

of syntax is used to establish the relationship when the utterance 
refers to several nouns or persons : 

'asa-* to yi^ xaidi-lbyd he filled the pot with water; pot water in-it 

td bi-h yigo* I fell into the water; water into-it I-fell 
tsi bitti dahsida I am sitting on a rock; rock on-it on-I-am sitting 
djo'l tsitia^ yi* y sa'q, the ball is in the box; ball box in-it there-is-a 

round- obj. 

7.109. Some postpositions are contracted with the nouns to which 
they are suffixed : 

k$*h (<[ Icin-i-h) into town; houses-into 
le-h (< le--vh) into the ground, soil, dust 
le-* (<C le--i-*) within the ground 
ta-h (< ta-i'K) into the water 

7.110. Postpositions may contract in combination: 

'alia* (<C 'a£-reciprocal pronoun-ta&-amongst-i*&-into) mixed 
td- 'alta- ndsdzi-dgo all being mixed together (NT 240:24) 

7.111. Many enclitics are compounded: 

ni-tsi-dji' na-cdh I am older than you; you-one-step-ahead-to-a-point 

td* bi-tai-dji' niyd I arrived before him; just him-one-step-ahead-to-a- 

point I-have-arrived 
xa-ya--dji y sa-d di-tid* toward-a point below him(4) talking was heard 
^O'dlq'-tSq'-dji infidel; belief -contrary-to-wishes-on-the-side 
bi-nd-ta y -gi at a place between his eyes; his-eyes-between-in-place 

(NT 156:18) 
t6pndi--ta-g6' to ghost land (a curse); ghosts-among-toward 
xa-M'-dfr'-oh missing his(4) tracks; his(4)-tracks-from-missing 
bi-ytf-di in the foliage; at-a-place-within 
bi-kd-'-do- from on it; from the surface; on-it-from 
'a-do- bi-tsfy-dji' from there to a point away from her; there-from 

diverging-from-her-to-a-point (WE ) 
ci-kd-'-dji' ndidi-tah fly above me; on-me-toward you- will -fly -up 

(NT 26:5) 
do-yoji- bi-yi'-do- xanisdnigi- greasewood fibers; greasewood those- 

which-grow-from-inside-it (NT 78:6) 
bi-yV-di'' dil xaxa-cjo-d blood came in clots from within him (bear); 

from-inside-him blood moved-in-bulk-out -of -place (NT 94:21) 

7.112. Postpositions may be compounded to form words with 
meanings of the combinations only, in which case each element loses 
its identity : 

*d*-d6' bi-ki-dp? afterward, after that (YMG 28) 

t 'alniriVq > --d6 t bi-Ui-dji' afternoon; noon-from afterward 

'vyq-'-do- bi-Jci-dji' after I ate . . . (YMG 28) 

bi-ke-'d^ next to him, the next one 

bi-lQ'-dji' na-cdh I am walking ahead of him; the-first-(ahead-of-him) 

I-am-walking-about (YMG 23) 
ci-tdi'dji nl\ he is on my side; toward-me-side he-is 
ci-tdi-dji-go ninVa-h put round obj. on my side, over here near me 

7.113.-7.114. BOTTNT> FORMS 117 

7.113. The position of enclitics in compounds has syntactic 
importance. In constructions like the following the first post- 
position refers to the preceding noun or demonstrative pronoun, or 
to the objective (possessive) pronoun to which the postposition is 
suffixed, the second postposition refers to a noun or pronoun that 
follows. The following examples illustrate this principle as well as 
the fact that progressive and static postpositions may be combined : 

ktf na'albqw bi-dd-h-gi bi-gaci- sizf the cow is standing in front of the 
moving train; train in-front-of-it-moving-in-place cow stands, -dd-h 
"in front of moving object" refers to "train" (as does fevit), but -gi 
refers to "cow." 

cikin bi-na,'~g6' xojoni it is beautiful around nay house; my-house 
around-it (house) -and-forward it-is-beautiful. -na*- refers to 6i-it, 
which refers back to "my house," -go- refers forward to "it is 
beautiful," that is, "beauty-extends-forward." 

dzil bi-ta'-gi cayan my house is between the mountains; mountains 
between-them-at-a-place my-house. -ta? "between" refers back to 
bi-it, whose antecedent is "mountain," and -gi "in place" refers 
forward to "my house." 

kin bi-nah-dji y sidd I am sitting against the house; house at-the-side- 
of- it -at-a -point I-am-sitting 

dzil bi-ne'-di naxaltin it is raining behind the mountain; mountain 
behind-it-at-a-place it-is-raining. Here -di "in place" refers to the 
following verb "it is raining." 

bika^ adani bi-kd^-gi bd*kdo* goxw6*h na-zkq bread and coffee are on the 
table; table on-it-in-place bread-also coffee contained-substances- 
are-here-and-there. -kd^ "on" refers to 6i-it, whose antecedent is 
"table," and -gi "in place" refers to "bread" and "coffee" which 

b^ekid bi-yah-gi cayan my home is beside the lake; lake beside-it-in- 
place my-home 

ihidUeh bi-yah-go- 'ati-n the cornfield extends along the road; cornfield 
along-it-onward road 

"asa*" bi-yi'-dfr' to xd-kq I dipped a water out of the jar; jar in-it-from 
water I-moved-out-of-container (YM 109) 

yi-kd'-go- na'ta 1 it flew about above him; toward-above-him it-flew- 

xa-tsi-tah-gd'-dah in his(4) hair among other places (she rubbed corn- 
meal); his(4)-hair-amongst-onward-for-example (NT 250:11) 

7.114. The following demonstrate compounding of different kinds 
of enclitics : 

8e'8yin-$--di the place where he had been killed; he-had-been-killed- 

'a*-d^-cy from there it must have been; there-from-probably 
xodo-le-l-go-cj' (chant) will probably come into existence; things-will- 

become-being -probably 
dabi-tis-go-cq" whatever may be omitted; omitting- them-being-inter- 

xa'dfi-d^-cq'-dd 1 from where will another (man) be found; where-is- 

xd'dji 1 -go-ci* wherever to; interrogative-to-a-point-being-probably 

118 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 7.115.-7.116. 

7.115. When a name is mentioned, it is given first, it is followed 
by a verb meaning "it-is-called," and the enclitic is suffixed to the 

ts4yi y xatiozi xo-ly&--di at a place called Narrow Canyon; canyon narrow 
place-is-called-at (WE) 

'aUinasttj, xo-lyi'-dfr 1 from Upper-mountain-ridge; Upper-mountain- 
ridge place-is-called-from 

7.116* Postpositions may be suffixed to verbs, as well as to other 
free and bound forms : 

tcidi 'alttd-h yilyod-gi car crash ; cars-colliding- with-each-other ran-to- 

end -place 
tsi yiUd-n ddde-stiini-gi concrete dam; rock it-is-ground (cement) 

'addni-gi dining room; place-in-which-aomething-is-eaten 

8.-8.104. THE VERB 

8. The Navaho verb-stem is composed of consonant-vowel (CV) 
or consonant-vowel-consonant (CVC) and is a bound form, requiring 
at least one prefix. The initials of some stems are modified by 
contact with preceding prefixes; in this respect stems correspond 
with other grammatical elements, since many sounds are unstable. 
However, the stem never completely loses its identity by absorption 
as do so many of the prefixes. Consequently, the stem can always be 
identified, even though its form may be slightly disguised: In the 
form nclj "I am," the stem is -If "be," the initial -I- being unvoiced 
by preceding -c- "I." In yrdq "we two are eating it," the stem is 
-y$, the initial -y- being absorbed by -d~ of -i'd- "we two." In 
yohsfy "you two are eating it," the stem again is -yq but -y > -8 
because of preceding h (3.119.). 

8.1. Except for the possible change of its initial due to contact 
with prefixes, the stem remains stable in all persons and numbers. 
Prefixes, rather than stems, are the conjugated parts of the verb. 
Since they may be unstable in their relationship to one another, 
primarily because of position, the prefix paradigms must be care- 
fully analyzed ; they are usually regular, once their composition is 

Navaho, like other Athabaskan languages, has a series of "classi- 
fiers" which indicate cause or agent. Some verbs have no classifier 
and are referred to as "zero-forms." The other classifiers are: -d- 
agentive, that is, the passive of the zero-form, -^-causative, and 
-^-passive causative. 

8.2. Many verbs may have any of the four forms, depending upon 
the meaning. Other stems with modified or specific meanings require 
one of the classifiers, which are then said to be "thematic." If no 
classifier is involved, the reference is to the "stem." If there is a 
classifier, the combination of classifier and stem is called the "stem 
complex." For example, -a of sa?q "round object lies, is in position," 
is the stem. In the example, sini-tiq "round object exists placed by 
you," -fq is the stem complex, composed of -d-q (d~- > f 3.57.). In 
se-Vd "I have, keep a round object, I-cause-lying-of-round-object," 
-I'd is the stem complex, and in sini-Vq "round object is kept by 
you," the stem complex is -Vq. Since some stem initials are changed 


120 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 8.2.-8.7. 

by the preceding classifier, certain phonetic effects of the classifiers 
must be learned. For instance, -yol "wind blows" is a stem, -dzol 
(< -d-yol) "be forced by blowing" is a stem complex, as are -sol 
(< -l-yol) "blow lightly" and -l-zol "blow hard." 

8.3. Verb forms are of two kinds, static and active. Static verbs, 
conjugated in one of the three primary perfective forms, or in a 
specific continuative form, occur only in that form. Such verbs are 
descriptive of state, condition, existence, number, quality, position, 
shape, and the like. In certain respects static verbs take the place of 
adjectives in English. At least one of these ideas, often more than 
one, is expressed by a monosyllabic stem. In answer to the question 
"Is there a blanket ?" one does not properly say, "there is a blanket" 
but rather si-l-ts&z "fabriclike object is" or si-ka-d "object lies 
spread." There is no subject or pronoun in these verbal utterances; 
the English subject or pronoun is a part of the Navaho stem -ka*d, 
or the stem-complex -l-ts&z. Note, for instance, the difference in the 
two sentences: be'ldlei 'axd-h nrld "I folded the blanket" (active 
verb), and be'ldlei 'ax&h nvldgo silts&z "there is a folded blanket" 
(YM 128). A mastery of fifteen to twenty of these stems and stem 
complexes is indispensable to the most elementary understanding of 
Navaho (8.31, 12.29-12.43.). 

8.4. Forms for all persons exist, for in Navaho the concept "I a 
round object exist" though it may sound "funny," is quite possible, 
but the third personal form — often non-personal in meaning — is 
most usual. 

8.5. The static stem, the last principal part in the dictionary 
arrangement, is sometimes identical with the perfective stem. A few 
stems have only one conjugation which may be continuative or per- 
fective. Such forms are called "absolute" in contradistinction to the 
static perfective, which may have closely related active forms. 

8.6. Active verbs contrast with static verbs in expressing activity 
or motion. They have many variations, their forms depending upon 
the stems (principal parts) and prefixes. The organization of the 
systems, aspects, and tenses of active forms is the major problem of 
the Navaho verb. 

8.7-8.30. Intransitive and Transitive 

8.7. Certain phases of intransitive and transitive forms must be 
explained for Navaho; these involve the significance of voice. The 
third person of most conjugations is the most difficult, one reason 
being that there is apparently no third personal subjective pronoun 

8.7.-8.14. THE VERB 121 

to correspond with the other persons. The reason for its absence 
seems to be the fact that the stem expresses being, if static, or 
motion, if active. Consequently, the thought is "existence of round 
object is, condition-of-being-round exists," rather than "it is a 
round object." If the form is active, "round object moves, there-is- 
motion-of-a-round-object" is a better translation than "it-a-round- 
object-moves." In other words, the kind of being or quality, or of 
motion dominates the idea of the person. 

8.8. In persons other than the third such stems as -wl "round 
object moves," -nil "plural objects move," are not modified by a 
classifier in the active voice of the transitive, apparently because 
they express an inherent quality to move. On the other hand, stems 
like -ti'l "one animate lying object moves," and -djol "fluffy, 
brushy, bunchy mass moves" usually have the causative classifier I 
prefixed to the stem, since such objects seem not to be inherently 
capable of motion. The realization that with some stems the motion 
or activity, rather than the expressed subject or pronoun is the 
subject will help greatly in understanding the changes of form due 
to intransitivity and voice. Just as the motion may be the subject of 
the intransitive, so the cause may be the subject of the passive. For 
example, yidjol "movingof fluffy mass istaking place progressively," 
yildjol "fluffy mass is being caused to move progressively, there is 
cause for progressive motion of fluffy mass." 

8.9. The objective, subjective and agentive pronominal prefixes 
have already been listed (6-6.38.); they must be considered as a 
part of the prefix conjugations since so many changes occur because 
of phonetic interrelationships (10-10.124.). A comparison of the 
objective, subjective and agentive prefixes determines the following 

8.10. The object of the stem complex stands first in the conjugated 
prefix complex of the active voice. 

8.11. The subject of the stem complex stands first in the conjuga- 
tion of the passive voice. 

8.12. Since the several object prefixes of the active voice, and the 
subject prefixes of the passive voice have the same position, and 
with few exceptions, related forms, the object of the verb in the 
active voice becomes the subject of the verb in the passive. 

8.13. The subject pronominal prefix, without which a verb form 
cannot exist, has a position immediately before the stem complex. 

8.14. The agent of the verb in the passive voice has the same 
position as the subject of the verb in the active voice, 

122 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.15-8.18. 

8.15. Since formally the subject of the intransitive verb and the 
verb in the active voice is similar to the agentive, and since it has 
the same position, the subject of the verb in the active voice 
becomes the agent of the passive. 

8.16. The formal similarity of the intransitive and of the active 
and passive conjugations in the first and second persons singular 
and dual of many aspects has obscured the significance of the 
difference which sometimes comes out in the third, fourth and 
indefinite persons of some aspects, and always in the second person 
dual of the perfective. Furthermore, the fact that object, subject, 
and agent of the third person have the form yi-, which corresponds 
with many z/i-aspective prefixes (10.102-10.109a.) further com- 
plicates the question. The rules here stated have been adduced in 
part from the analysis of the mistakenly so-called "irregular" or 
"aberrant" forms. Many 2/i-aspective forms can absorb yi-thiid 
object, yi- theoretical subject, and yi-agent, but others cannot. 
Those which cannot furnish the key to the whole pronominal 

8.17. Although the rules for the position of the object, subject, 
and agent hold most commonly, there are exceptions due to the 
phonetic character (and doubtless the historical relationship) of the 
fourth and indefinite personal prefixes, dji- and 'a-, which, no 
matter what their function may be, must have a position as near 
initial as possible in the conjugated complex. In most cases dji- 
dominates the aspective prefixes, absorbs some, but as the subject 
does not always behave the same way in relation to them as the 
agent (the fourth person object is xo- and does not enter into the 
discussion at this point). For instance, in the conjugation of ni-ni- 
"start for perfective" (10.99a.) the form "he(4) has arrived at goal" 
is djini-, but "it has been moved to goal by him(4)" is dji-. Corre- 
spondingly, in the same conjugation "someone or something has 
arrived at goal" has the form 'am-, but "motion to goal has been 
completed by someone" has the form 't-, and "something has been 
moved to goal by him(4)" has the form 'adji-. 

8.18. 'a-indefinite subject and 'a-indefinite object have the same 
form, and often 'a-indefinite agent is similar, 'a- as subject or object 
has the initial position in the conjugation, preceding even dji-, as 
the preceding example demonstrates. It differs from 'a-agent, how- 
ever, in that 'a-subject or object does not have the form 'ad- or 'adi- y 
whereas such forms may occur when the agent is designated. In the 
conjugation of m-m-perfective just cited, this differentiation does 
not come out because 'a-indefinite agent may attach itself to a 
following -m-, as in 'am-, or it may contract with ni- 9 as in '£-. If, 

8.18.-8.21. THE VERB 123 

however, we examine the form "it has been moved to goal by some- 
one," a form in which both subject and agent are expressed, we 
find bi't'e*- (< bi-[3] subj.-'odi-indefinite agent-m-m-pf.) because 
'a- as agent in this setting cannot be contracted with m-rw'-per- 
fective (see 8.23. for scheme of analysis), 'a- as agent therefore 
requires the glide syllable ~di-, which in its turn contracts with 
m-7&£-perfective in a different way and demonstrates that the agent 
is not the same as the subject or object. This example also illustrates 
the influence of position, for although 'a-indefinite pronoun must 
have a forward position in the complex, the position of the passive 
pronouns, subject-agent, is preserved, whereas the position of the 
pronouns of the active voice is object-subject. 

8.19. The second person dual, -oh-, shows that .position differenti- 
ates the subject and agent. In the progressive and continuative 
forms the order of prefixes is aspect-subject, object-aspect-subject, 
or aspect-agent, subject-aspect-agent, and since only one aspective 
prefix is involved, -oh- "you two" retains its position immediately 
before the verb complex. This may be observed from the h which 
either persists in second dual forms, or affects the initial of the stem 
complex : yolyal "y° u two are eating meat," not yol-yal in which the 
stem complex is 4-yal; or yolxal in which 2-active causative changes 
the stem initial ytox; 'oljic^you two are dancing," not 'oljic in which 
the stem complex is -Ijic ; yosq "you two are eating it," not yoh-yq in 
which the stem is -yq, (3.119.). 

8.20. The pattern is different, however, in the perfectives which 
have compound aspective prefixes — ni-(ni-), yi-(ni-), si-(ni-). In the 
intransitive the order is aspect-subject-completive(-m-). The inter- 
vention of (-ni-) completive between the subject and the stem 
complex changes several of the forms, especially the first singular 
and second dual, as the conjugations (10.99a, 10.104, 10.117.) show. 
In the second dual there are no'-, yo*-, and so*- instead of no'h-, yo*h-, 
and so'h-. I therefore conclude that the order of prefixes in the 
passive is aspect-completive-agent, or subject-aspect-completive- 
agent, a conclusion corroborated by other forms without resorting 
to two sets of pronouns, one for the progressive-continuative, one 
for the perfectives. 1 

8.21. The forms resulting from differences in the character of the 
prefixes and their instability are in contrast to the first dual forms, 
which because of the stability of -rd-, probably a compound, are the 
same in many aspects — progressive, present, inceptive cessative, 

1 Hoijer 1945a, pp. 198—9. Morgan does not differentiate the second dual 
perfective without -h- and the passive with it, but I have checked this matter 
with other interpreters and find the forms uniformly distinctive. 

124 NAVAH0 GRAMMAR 8.21.-8.23. 

past (yi-pf.), and inceptive perfective. The reason is that -vd- can 
absorb many prefixes, such as (-m-), yi- of various types, and that 
it apparently retains its position just before the stem complex 
whether it is subjective or agentive. Consequently, the first person 
dual forms are rarely determining, that is, if one encounters merely 
a first dual form, one can tell from the stem, but not from the prefix, 
whether it is progressive, present, cessative, or perfective. If the 
verb happens to have similar principal parts in the aspects mention- 
ed, there is no way of differentiating aspect except by getting other 
forms ; sometimes one is characterizing, sometimes another. 

8.22, The points of this discussion may be summarized as follows: 

The object of the transitive verb in the active voice is the subject of the 

The subject of the verb in the active voice is the agent of the passive. 
The order of verb elements is as follows : 

Progressive-continuative intransitive: aspect-subject-stem complex. 
Progressive-continuative transitive active : object-subject-stem complex. 
Progressive-continuative transitive passive: subject-aspect-agent-stem 

Perfective intransitive: aspect-subject-completive-stem complex. 
Perfective transitive active : object-aspect-subject-completive-stem 

Perfective transitive passive: subject-aspect-completive-agent-stem 


Since dji-± subject or agent, and 'a-indefinite subject or object, 
and 'a-, 'adi- indefinite agent precede aspective prefixes the order in 
these persons is : 

Progressive-continuative intransitive: subject-aspect-stem complex. 
Progressive-continuative transitive active : object-d;>*-subject-aspect- 

stem complex. 
Vi-subject does not occur with 'a-object. 
Progressive-continuative transitive passive: dp-agent-aspect-stem 

Progressive-continuative transitive passive: 'a-subject-dp-agent-aspect- 

stem complex. 
Perfective intransitive: d;t-subject-aspect-completive-stem complex. 
Perfective transitive active: object-d/t-subject-aspect-completive-stem 

Perfective transitive passive :rf/vagent-aspect-completive-stem complex. 

8.23, The prefix paradigms have been arranged to indicate 
objective, subjective and agentive pronominal prefixes in relation 
to other prefixes with which they combine. Numbers— 1, 2, 3, (3), 4 — 
indicate the persons, (3) is the second third person (6.23ff ) ; i stands 
for the indefinite pronoun. The third person form may stand for 
"... motion, action is taking place ; he, she, it is . . .ing; . . . motion, 
action is being caused." These simple forms seldom change in the 
passive. The first and second singular passives, except perfectives, 

8.23.-8.27. the verb 125 

are usually the same as the active voice forms, and are therefore 
not repeated. If the third passive, often the only form that changes, 
is not listed, it is the same as the third person intransitive. If the 
numbers are used alone they indicate singular; D preceding a 
number means "dual," P preceding a number indicates "plural." 
Since third and fourth person duals are the same as the singular 
forms, they are not listed. Plurals are often indicated, since da- 
plural indicates the position, and therefore often the function, of 
other prefixes. 

8.24. Number combinations indicate the English order of pro- 
nouns of the transitive: for example, 3-3 means "he is . . .ing it;" 
by 3 " . . .ing is being caused, there is . . .ing by him, her, it ;" 3 by 3 
"it is being . . . ed by him, her, it, . . . ing is being caused by him, her, 
it;" 3 by i "he, she, it is being . . .ed by something." 

8.25. In some aspects two objects, one of the stem, one of the 
cause, occur — these are indicated by 3-3-3 "she is causing him 
to . . . it." The English order is given for understanding, but the 
prefix order explained above is the Navaho form. 

8.26. The greatest difficulty of analysis is due to the large number 
of overlapping forms and to the many functions performed by a 
single prefix of the type CV. yi- for instance, is a third person object 
and agent (possibly also a subject), a prefix of the progressive, 
momentary, present, and perfective aspects, and of the cessative 
and repetitive systems. Each is distinctive in at least one person, 
often in more than one, but many of the forms are the same and 
therefore subject to misunderstanding. The case of the yi-'preiixes 
is further complicated by the fact that other prefixes, such as xi- 
repetitive action and si-harm, phonetically unstable as they are, 
may combine with other prefixes, particularly of the t/i-type, to 
form yi~ or yi--. The paradigms demonstrate that 'd-thus and *d-, 
'ddt-self have overlapping forms, as do '^-indefinite pronoun and 
'a-beyond; na-(n&-) "back," and nd-(nd~) "against;" ni-absolute, 
wi-uniform, m-start for, m-end. Forms of ^-repetitive action over- 
lap those of ara-out and aro-place. 

8.27. However, a study of all these and other groups of prefixes 
with full paradigms shows each prefix to be distinctive because of 
its position and effect on surrounding prefixes. Once this distinction 
is ascertained, the paradigm is regular and the one or more forms 
that indicate the uniqueness of the prefix are test forms. It is 
characteristic of Navaho that different forms, rather than any one 
form, are tests of different prefixes, depending largely upon phonetic 
composition. Forms in 'a-, nd-, ni-, yi-, xi-, xo-, and si- are ex- 

126 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.27.-8.30. 

ceedingly unstable, and it so happens that these prefixes combine 
and recombine frequently in the prefix conjugations. On the other 
hand, di-start from, na-about, xa-out have a certain stability, yet 
all break down in some kinds of combination: di-si-pf. > de*- or de- 
(10.88c, 10.90b.); wa-about > n- or ni- before di- and some other 
prefixes (10.36.). Test forms must therefore be determined from the 
forms that contrast contractions of the unstable sounds with fuller 

8.28. The third person is often the most variable form and should 
always be given. However, some prefixes can absorb others in the 
third, but not in other persons, and if only the third is given, 
compound prefixes may mistakenly be considered simpler than they 
actually are. For instance, dini- is a static continuative (10.89- 
10.89L), -ni- does not appear in any of the third persons (3, 4, or i); 
it does appear in dini- the second person. Since -ni- is the second 
person subject dini- might or might not contain a prefix -ni-. In this 
case the high tone of -ni- (< ni-ni-) is conclusive. If it were not, 
dinic- the first person, would be. More often than not the differentia- 
tion between the m-prefixes is shown by the third, fourth, or 
indefinite forms (10.97ff.). 

8.29. The published accounts of Navaho give the first person 
singular as the type form. Although the first person is sometimes a 
test form — in the perfective, for example — it is usually quite un- 
satisfactory because -c- the first person pronoun affects many 
following stem initials in such a way as to disguise them: for ex- 
ample, c-s > s-, and -c-voiced fricative > c-voiceless fricative. The 
classifiers I and I are included in these rules. With only the first 
person form the exact stem cannot be determined, nor can its 
classifier whether zero, I ,or I, since the two last are absorbed by -c-. 

8.30. Since the fourth person prefix, dji-, and the indefinite pro- 
noun, 'a-, have a distinctive position in the complex they sometimes 
furnish test forms. The first person dual may test the position or 
stability of the prefix preceding the pronoun — nei'd- < wa-back- 
(nd-)-i'd-Dl subj. — or the effect -d- may have on the stem — yi'dd 
(< #i-cont.-rd-Dl subj.-2/9-eat pres.) "we two are eating it," but 
yvdzol (< yi-cont.-rd-Dl subj.-yol blow pres.) "we two are blowing 
it." The second person dual may be a test of the effect of final -h on 
the following consonant — yohsfy (< ^i-cont.-oA-D2 subj.-y^ eat 
pres.) "you two are eating it;" yolyal (< #i-cont.-o7&-D2 sub] A-yal 
eat meat pres.) "you two are eating meat." (Note that h-l-yal> -Ixal, 
but in the last example this does not occur, thus proving that the 
classifier is I, thematic with -yal, rather then I.). 

The reasons just given are sufficient to justify the bulky character 
of the prefix paradigms. In addition to the paradigmatic forms 

8.30.-8.31. THE VERB 127 

some stems, with which they may be used, are given for convenience, 
as well as to illustrate the kinds of stems characteristically used with 
the given prefix. Since the adjective is so closely related to the verb, 
and since prefixes are involved in treating the adjective, the para- 
digms have been placed after the section on the adjective, rather 
than after this section on the verb (10-10.124.). 

8.31-8.35. Static Verbs 

8,31. It has already been explained that static verbs are one of the 
main types of Navaho verbs (8.3.). The following are some of the 
basic static verbs with si-perfective prefix. Because of their mean- 
ings, the third person form is most often encountered and is there- 
fore the form given. Many may be found in any person; the con- 
jugation is that of si-perfective (10.117.) : 

aa-'^f (< si-'q) round or convenient obj. exiBts; there-is-condition-of- 

si-taz it is bent; fchere-is-condition-of-long-obj.-having-been-bent (as 

si-tq long rigid obj. existe; there-is-condition-of-narrow-elongated- 

si-til hair is matted; there-is-condition-of -hair-tangling 

si-ti it is roasted, parched 

si-nih it is kneaded 

si-nil there are several separate obj.; there-is-condition-of-separate- 

si-gan it is dried, desiccated; there-is-condition-of-desiccation 

8%-ka'd broad, fabriclike obj. is spread; there-is-condition-of-spreading, 
there-is-condition-of-surface-formed (cp. si-l-tso'Z "there is fab- 
riclike obj.") 

si-kq, there is contained substance; there-is-condition-of-containedness 

si-yic bow-shaped ; there-is-condition-of -bowing 

si-yi there is a load, parcel, consolidated amount of goods; there-is- 
condition-of -having-been-packed 

si-zi'd there is a mass of flowing substance; there-is-condition-of - 

si-htso'Z, si-l-tso-z there is fabriclike obj.; there-is-condition-of -broad- 
flexibility (cp. si-ka-d "there is spread surface") 

si-tiih it exists pinched with fingernails (as corrugated pottery) 

si-tSil it exists in shattered condition 

ci-jah it is curved, curved obj. projects; there-is-condition-of -hooklike- 

ci-jo-j objects lie parallel; there-is-condition-of -parallelism 

ci : j6-d it is bulky ; there-is-condition-of-bulkiness 

ci-dja*' there is granular mass; there-are-plural-obj. -in-mass 

ci-djfr y there are plural objects; there-is-condition-of-plurality 

ci-djij it is crushed; there-is-condition-of-being-crushed 

ci-djo'l there is fluffy, bunchy, brushy, uneven mass ; there-is-condition- 
of -fluff iness, bunchiness 

si-Id there is long, narrow flexible object, there is a pair 

si-tte-' it is viscid, mushy, slimy; there-is-condition-of viscosity 

si-tli-j • there is a mere pinch, a speck, it is merely detectable; there-is- 

128 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.32.-8.35, 

8.32. A class of stems indicates position; sometimes description 
of the object is included with the position of the object : 

si-dd one sits, stays, dwells; there-is-conctition-of-one-animate-obj.-in- 

si-ta" there is shelter; there-is-condition-of-being-between (cp. -to? 

postposition "between") 
si-ti-j two lie 
si-tf one animate obj. lies; there-is-condition-of-one-animate-obj.- 


si-z{\ 8%-z$h it stands; there-is-standing-position 

8.33. Some stems refer to a condition or state perceived: 

si-bin it is full; there-is-condition-of- fullness 

si-doh it is hot; there-is-condition-of -hotness 

si-Uaz it is cold; there- is -coldness 

si-J6dzi it is cool 

si-zili it is lukewarm 

si-si-' it is numb; there-is-condition-of-numbness 

susxi*' it is paralyzed; it is bitter, resinous, extremely pungent 

si-zi^ it is tiresome, mild, tepid, boring, monotonous 

si-sid he is malicious 

One form is general: si-H'' "it has become; there-is-condition- 
of-change; change-has-been-established' ' 

8.34. Static verbs may have d, I, or I forms; changes in the 
prefixes are formally the same as in the £t-perfective. If a static verb 
is causativized with I it means "cause state to be," hence, "have at 
hand, have in readiness, keep." If the agentive d or passive causative 
I is a part of the stem complex, the verb means that "a state or 
condition exists having been brought about by an agent or caused 
by an unknown force." 

8.35. Static verbs may have prefixes other than si-; some are 
continuative, others perfective. A few examples are here given: 

di-tq-d animate beings are scattered 

d%4% it is emulsified, plasmic 

di-tin it is dense 

di-fo* it is very soft 

di-todi it is fragile, frail, weak, soft, flexible 

di-to-di it is very soft 

di-giz it is twisted 

di-kddi spread object is very thin, fabric is thin 

diUq it is square 

di-yoj botryoidal 

di-yol rough surfaced, rutted 

di-tdid it is fibrous, tough, sinewy; it is gummy, viscid (cp. tsid "sinew") 

di-joc they are easily split 

na-'# objects lie one by one in line 

ni-bal fabrics hang in a row 

ni-dd one by one they sit in a row 

nUtq, long, rigid objects lie in line 

ni-t6*j two by two they (animals) lie in a row 

8.35.-8.38. the veeb 129 

ni-ti one by one animate objects lie in a row 

ni-jo-j parallel objects lie 

ni-za'd it is far 

ni-ca-j it is wearing out 

ni-mqz it is globular, round, spherical 

ni-don it is taut, tight 

ni-yiz it is round and long, cylindrical 

ni-tsili fabriclike object is soft (as buckskin) 

8.36-8.81. Active Verbs 

8.36. Several explanations of the active verb have been proposed, 
all attempting a determination of principal parts and the prefixes 
that go with them. 2 Here yet another is presented, one which seems 
to account for more that has been unsatisfactory in the others, and 
to establish greater predictability with fewer exceptions. 

8.37. In contrast with the static verb, which has only one para- 
digm, and expresses state or condition, or the result of action, is the 
active verb, which has many principal parts and prefixes. The 
numerous forms of the active verb indicate different aspects of 
time, motion, action, and distance covered by a moving object. 
Motion takes place in space; variations of the active verb indicate 
spatial considerations, and this is the real difference between static 
and active verbs. Besides, there are verbal ideas concerned with 
activity that does not necessarily involve a notion of covering space ; 
these are active verbs, but are treated as if space were rationalized. 

8.37a. In Navaho tense may be defined as future, present, and 
past. However, I prefer to use the term "aspect" for these and other 
time-space relations because progression, continuity, and similar 
ideas are more dominant than time, or at least included in the 
notion of time. Since these and other meanings are also included in 
the term "mode," the last will be used only to differentiate indica- 
tive and optative. The term "system" will define temporal, aspective 
and modal distinctions, all of which are made by similar processes. 
Aspects are differentiated by stems, prefix conjugations, or both; 
systems are a grouping of the aspects. Just as paradigmatic forms 
overlap, so do tense-aspects in form and meaning; such overlapping 
prevents an absolute assignment to systems, but the following 
scheme allows generalization and, at the same time, indicates the 
function of the details within the system. 

8.38-8.42. Progressive-Continuative System 

8.38. The progressive, the first stem in the listing of verb stems, 
and the one quoted as an example and referred to in parentheses for 
facility in finding the verb, is the most generalized in meaning 

a Hoijer 1946a, pp. 1-13 

130 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.38.-8.41. 

(12.29ff.). The progressive indicates unlimited unrestricted motion, 
or an activity carried on simultaneously with motion, "there is 
unrestricted motion, he is moving along, he is acting simultaneously 
with moving" (10.102.). Usually the future stem is the same as the 
progressive; in the few cases in which the stems differ, the future 
stem is written under the progressive. The future is formed by 
compounding the prefix di- and yi-progressive (10.87.). Probably 
di- is the prefix "start from/' or "emit," both of which are conju- 
gated similarly in the continuative and perfective forms — one of the 
many cases of overlapping. The progressive and future are the freest 
and most stable of the prefixes, which may be used with almost any 
of the progressive stems. 

8.39. The next three principal parts listed are referred to as 
"continuative": The momentary stem often has the same form as 
the progressive. It indicates a moment of unrestricted time, a cross- 
section of the progressive, "he is making a momentaneous motion, 
he is acting momentarily." It is conjugated with the continuative 
prefixes (10.103.). 

The present stem sometimes has the form of the momentary, 
sometimes that of the inceptive, and it is sometimes distinctive. It 
is a continuative with a temporal meaning, "he is . . .ing." It, too, 
is conjugated with continuative prefixes (10.103.). 

8.40. The inceptive, though it defines a system not continuative, 
as its name implies, may be conjugated with continuative prefixes 
(10.103.). The distinction is drawn at the point between unrestricted 
and restricted motion. It is made between stems with a meaning 
that indicates the subject as covering space, and those indicating 
motion or activity without the subject moving in space or out of 

For instance, if the significance of a stem like "eat" is general, 
that is, unrestricted, the form is yi-yq, "he is eating it" — the subject 
acts without changing position. Therefore the present stem is used. 
If the meaning is "he is starting to eat it (a specified quantity)," 
the form is yi^yf'h (10.99.). The inceptive stem indicates the start of 
eating, and has reference to the * 'amount of eating done" rather than 
to the subject. All three forms have been included in the term 
"imperfeotive" used by other students of Navaho. 3 Here a sub- 
division is made because the stems may differ. 

8.41. In the use of the word "system" three aspects, or tenses, are 
grouped — the future, present, and past. Past time is completed 
continuation, expressed by the yi-perfective (10.104.). It means 
"... has been," as compared with the m-perfective and 

8 Hoijer 1948a, pp. 247-59; Young-Morgan 1943, Grammar, pp. 77ff.: 
Navaho -English, pp. ii-viii, 1-247 

8.41.-8.46. THE VERB 131 

si-perfective, which refer to more absolute completion. The pro- 
gressive, continuative, and "past" (yi-perfective) prefixes all have 
the same form yi-, but it occurs without compounding with other 
aspective prefixes in the continuative only. However, yi-perfective 
undergoes some of the same changes as yi-progressive in comparable 
settings, test forms being -cr- of the third persons (V-, yo*- y djo'- 

8.42. All perfectives are the result of compounded prefixes. The 
ni-, yi-, and si-perfectives are really compounds of these prefixes 
with -ni-completive. Each prefix of the compound has its own 
phonetic effects, which cannot be ignored in understanding the 
conjugations. Consequently, if -Hi- is distinguished as the comple- 
tive, yi- may properly be considered as the progressive. The 
occurrence of yi- as the perfective is to be analyzed as yi~ni- t and 
the vowel of the third person passives confirms the relation of yi- 
progressive and yi- of yi-m-perfective (3 by 3 yo*- < yi-3 pass, 
subj.- yi-prog.-m-compl.-yi-3 ag., cp. 10.104.). We shall see that the 
same processes are at work in ni-ni- s the so-called rw-perfective, and 
probably also in si-ni-, the si-perfective (10.99a, 10.117.). 

The definition of progressive, continuative, and progressive com- 
pletive aspects illustrates what is meant by a system; it is the 
grouping of related aspects. 

8.43-8.47. Inceptive System 

8.43. In contrast with the expression of unrestricted motion of 
the progressive-continuative system is the restricted character of 
the inceptive. Two commonly used prefixes illustrate the restrictive 
character of the inceptive aspect: di- which means "start moving 
from, motion starts from" and implies that the motion, having a 
start also has an end or goal ; ni- means "start for, motion or moving 
makes for a goal," and it implies that the motion started from a 
particular point (10.88aff, 10.99.). 

8.44. The inceptive system has no true future, since it is concep- 
tually antithetical to the progressive. Inceptive prefixes may be 
used with the momentary, however, since the momentary is a 
random restriction of the progressive. The inceptive makes the 
restriction definite. Inceptive prefixes are used with momentary or 
inceptive stems, but not with the present stem. 

8.45. The inceptive completive is the so-called m-perfective, 
really ni-ni-< ni-start for, goal-m'-completive, and means "arrive, 
complete starting for, finish . . .ing" (10.99a). 

8.46. Just as the continuative and inceptive overlap in form and 
function, so do the perfectives : di-start from, though an inceptive 

10 Eeicbard 

132 ttAVAHO GKAMMAR 8.46.-^.49. 

prefix, takes si-ni- rather than m-m'-perfective. The reason is that 
Navaho d stinguishes the time-agpeot of the prefix as well as of the 
stem. Since di- emphasizes the start of the motion, it cannot rep- 
resent the end of that motion, but the completion of the start may 
be indicated rather than the completion of the motion or activity, 
hence di-si-ni- is one perfective form (10.88c). 

8.47. Distinguishing the continuatives as momentary, customary, 
present, and inceptive, accounts for many forms previously called 
"alternant" (1.12.). Presumably such forms are interchangeable, 
actually they are not. The interpreters say "they are the same;" 
they think so only because they do not know how to explain the 
subdivisions of "present" in English. The situation corresponds with 
that of the English speaker trying to explain the simple present, the 
present progressive, and the present emphatic to a European whose 
language has only one present. All this is not to say that every stem 
form found in Navaho has been completely accounted for, but it is 
to affirm that most of the forms fall into the systems here explained 
quite satisfactorily, and to allow new constructions which are borne 
out by the practical use of Navaho. 

8.48-8.50. Cessative System 

8.48. The aspects so far defined explain the primary distinctive 
stems with the exception of the optative. The discussion has also 
included the essentials of the simplest conjugations, if by simple is 
meant a single aspective prefix. Such a meaning is, however, hardly 
tenable, for even so far we have had to deal with compounding of 
prefixes — di-future with ^-progressive, and all the perfectives. The 
systems yet to be explained all depend upon prefix compounding, 
though there may be some slight differentiation of principal parts. 
One of these, the cessative, is a system because it includes future, 
inceptive and perfective cessative. 

8.49. The inceptive cessative stem is usually the same as the 
inceptive, but it is distinctive for some verbs ; when it is, the stem is 
written under the inceptive stem. In addition to the possible stem 
difference, the inceptive cessative has a conjugation compounded of 
2^-continuative-t/i-cessative (10.105.). The prefix, -yt-cessative, 
though obscured by contraction in the inceptive and perfective, 
becomes obvious in the future (10.105a.), where due to phonetic 
saturation, it appears before <2i-future. Throughout, t/i-cessative has 
effects on other prefixes. The perfective cessative has many forms 
similar to those of the inceptive cessative, but as the paradigm 
analyses show, several are test forms. There is no evidence that the 
perfective cessative stem differs from other perfective stems. Some 
verbs have more than one perfective stem, but they apparently 

8.49.-8.53. the verb 133 

have some other significance, such as continuative compared with 
momentary perfective, differences which will be noted in the list of 
principal parts. 

8.50. The inceptive cessative means "start to pause/' as when a 
horse changes gait to a walk, or a driver starts to brake a car; the 
perfective cessative means "pause has been completed," but the 
motion need not necessarily have ceased. 

The cessatives as treated in this analysis, particularly as determin- 
ing the inceptive and perfective cessative conjugations and as 
accounting for some distinctive principal parts, enable us to eliminate 
the "conjunct" and "disjunct" categories of Hoijer and Young- 
Morgan. 4 Though it is not always brought out in translations, the 
application of the cessative (and repetitive) principles has been 
corroborated frequently by the context of Sapir's and Father 
Berard Hailis texts as well as by my own. 5 

8.51-8.53. Customary 

8.51. The absence of sharp distinctions has already been well 
demonstrated; the customary is another example, somewhat differ- 
ent in its affiliations. The customary has a stem, usually identical 
with the momentary, but sometimes different ; when distinct, it is 
written under the momentary. The customary prefix is a compound, 
na-{na-)> and so far as can be determined, the conjugation differs in 
no way from that of nd-(nd-) "back, in cycle, circle, arc of circle," 
which occurs with all the continuative stems — momentary, present 
and inceptive. The customary may, therefore, be considered an 
aspect with na-(na~) "back" conjugation and its own stem (10.94c). 

8.52. The customary means that an action or motion is carried out 
several times, nd' -again with any kind of stem denotes an action 
repeated at least once or several times with an intervening interval 
of time. nd-(nd-) "customary" denotes that the act or motion is 
repeated indefinitely at regular intervals. An additional particle leh 
may repeat the customary idea. If, however, an act or some aspect 
of an act or motion is carried out frequently, rather than habitually, 
the repetitive is used (10.106aff., lO.llaff.). In this work customary 
and repetitive indicate regular types of iteration based on the above 
definitions whioh have been determined by form. 6 

8.53. Often, but not always, the d-classifier (d-form of stem) is 
used with the customary prefixes; if so, the prefixes have the 

4 Hoijer 1946a, pp. 1-2; Young-Morgan 1943, Grammar, pp. 77ff. 

6 Sapir-Hoijer 1942; Haile 1938, 1943 

6 In the Young-Morgan grammar and dictionary the terms "iterative, 
uaitative, semeliterative, and semelfactive" are used without correspondence 
of forms, so that the terminology is confused and confusing. 


134 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.53.-8.58. 

passive forms. Perhaps the passive (agentive) form is to be ex- 
plained by the following : once a motion or action has been started, 
the agent of the repeated action is known, hence it, rather than the 
subject, is expressed. Usage must be important also. Perhaps it is 
dominant, for AB's grandmother used to tell him, "Don't -{d'h 
yourself, just those people you respect, nd'ficta'h (T customarily 
start moving a round object') sounds affected, overdone, nddic'a-h 
sounds much better/' The remark probably refers to the fact that 
an action performed by oneself obviously has a definite and known 
agent expressed as the subject of the active voice, whereas an act or 
motion performed by someone else is subject to qualification and 
may therefore have a passive form. 

8.54^8.61. Perfective 

8.54. The perfective has already been referred to in the discussion 
of the static verb, and in the definition of systems. There are three 
perfectives, m-perfective, 2/t-perfective, and si-perfective. Theoreti- 
cally an active verb may have any one of three perfectives, depending 
upon the meaning. If the action has been completed, or if the aspect 
of the action has been completed and continues to exist as a con- 
dition, the si-perfective is used. Some prefixes, of course, require one 
perfective, rather than another, as a matter of form : 

ea'd round object is, there is condition of roundness (10.117.) 

de'zkai (< di-si-kai) many persons have started to go; condition-of- 

plural-persons-starting-to-go-has-been-completed ( 10.88c.) 
na'znil (< na-si-nil) sprinkling (of sand, pollen) has taken place (10.92.) 
ne'jgic (< ni-si-gic) there has been cutting evenly with a blade (10.98c.) 

8.55. If the motion or action has been completed, but has not 
necessarily ceased, the yi-perfective is used (10.104.). This has been 
translated as "... has been . . .ing" to indicate progression and to 
distinguish it from the si- or m-perfective ". . . has . . .ed." 

8.56. As the prefix di-start from illustrates the function of si- 
perfective, so di-emit, move from within, illustrates the ^-pro- 
gressive form of what is probably the same prefix, di-emit takes 
i/i-perfective and means " . . .ing from within has been taking place" 
(10.88b.). With these two prefixes, which may be used together, 
Navaho allows di- as a prefix for all aspects and systems. 

8.57. The prefixes m-uniform and -^-repetitive aspect have yi- 
and si-perfective forms (10.98b, c, 10.106c, d.). 

8.58. The inceptive has the distinctive ni-perfective (10.99a.)*. 

8.59.-8.65. the verb 135 

8.59. Some prefixes — nd-(nd~) "back," na-{n&-) "against/* yini- 
reciprocal effect, ajo-place-si-harm, and d^i-si-attitude — have all 
three perfective forms. 

8.60. The prefixes d£-start against, yini-doubtivl destination 
(10.90b,c, 10.110b,c.) have ni- and si-perfectives. 

8.61. The perfective cessative has already been explained as 
belonging to a different system from the others, and therefore it has 
a special paradigm (10.105c). 

8.62-8.72. Repetitive System 

8.62. Action or motion repeated many times or by many subjects 
is expressed by the repetitives, prefixes which may be used with any 
stem. Many repetitives have the same forms as the cessatives, but 
differ in that cessatives have distinctive stems, repetitives do not. 
Moreover, the perfective cessative has its own conjugation, whereas 
the repetitives have all three regular perfective forms. So far 
"repetitives" have been referred to rather than "repetitive," the 
reason being that there are two, xt-repetitive of the action, and 
-^-repetitive of the aspect. Either may be used separately, or both 
may be used together (10. 106aff, 10.114aff, 10.114k.). 

8.63. The discussion of prefixes (10-10.71.) will show that prefixes 
differ because of their position in the verb complex. Some are a part 
of the conjugation, others stand before it. Some have a position 
(aspective) just before the subject-agent pronoun; -2/i-repetitive 
aspect is of this kind. Others occupy a place nearer the initial part 
of the prefix complex; xi-repetitive action is of this sort. A com- 
parison of the paradigms (10.72-10.124.) indicates that many of the 
forms are overlapping, that many correspond with some of the 
cessative forms, but the analyses bring out the differences, partic- 
ularly the variation of position as demonstrated by the future. 

8.64. Repetitive forms, especially those resulting in yi m -, like the 
cessatives, were included in the attempted explanation of "con- 
juncts" and "disjuncts." 7 The paradigms of repetitive prefixes 
show that cessatives and repetitives were confused, and that they 
ar.e distinctive. 

8.65. Besides the two repetitive prefixes, xi- and -yi-, a third 
device, the prefix da-plural, may denote a repetitive idea, da-plural 
may be required to express repetition with certain stems. If the 
customary or repetitives are used, the same subject is thought of as 
repeating the action or motion. There are some acts, however, 
which because of their character, cannot have the same psychological 

7 Young-Morgan 1943, Grammar, pp. 77ff 

136 NAVAH0 GRAMMAR 8.65.-8.72. 

subject — and again the act or motion functions as subject. Since it 
is impossible for the same snowflake or raindrop to go back to the 
sky and fall more than once, the repetitive of verbs like "snow, 
rain/' and the like is expressed by da-plural, instead of by a re- 
petitive prefix. In da-diyo'tcvl "it will snow repeatedly," aa-plural 
takes the place of ^-repetitive action, but -yi-repetitive aspect is 
allowable because, of course, a start may be made repeatedly. 
Compare da-yitcvl "snow is starting to fall, snowflakes are starting 
for;" da-nitcvl "it snowed repeatedly, snowflakes repeatedly fell to 
end;" da-niyol "wind blew repeatedly;" ni-da-xaltin "there are 
repeated rains;" da-yidildon "he is shooting gun repeatedly, he-is- 

8.66. Often, but not always, the repetitive requires the d-form of 
the stem, in this respect corresponding with the customary (8.53.). 

8.67. The following are specific meanings of the repetitive: 

If each segment of motion is thought of as separate, the verb is 
momentary. Repetition of such motion may be indicated by the 
stem alone — "jerk, drip, whip, club, slap, scratch, dig" — or the 
repetitive prefixes may be used. 

8.68. When repetitive forms are used, the verb may indicate 
groups moving, or one group moving simultaneously with another, 
or several other groups. 

8.69. A repetitive form used with a stem that indicates continuous 
motion designates motion repeated in spans. 

8.70. The repetitive is used when several objects act simultane- 
ously within the same area, but not necessarily at exactly the same 

8.71. The repetitive form in the singular indicates that the same 
subject repeated the activity more than three times. The repetitive 
form in the dual may indicate that two subjects carried on the same 
activity simultaneously or that the same subjects repeated the 
activity more than three times. The repetitive form in the plural 
indicates that numerous subjects carry on the same activity 
repeatedly or that they carry on numerous activities simultane- 

8.72. Many speakers, especially those who use English (including 
Morgan), do not realize the distinctions of the repetitive, nor do they 
differentiate xi~ and ~yi-. They do, however, give correct forms for 
the cessative, but they would consider inceptive, inceptive cessative, 
and inceptive repetitives the "same," that is, in English, not in 
Navaho. If they recognize perfective cessative and perfective rep- 
etitives at all, they consider theni also the "same." 

8.73.-8.78. the verb 137 

8.73-8.76. Imperative 

8.73. Usually in speech, as well as in texts, the second person 
singular, dual, or plural is used without modification for the 

The progressive, present, or inceptive is a command for immediate 
action : 

nd-s yind'l (prog.) go on, keep on going! 

t6ininilka-d (inc.) herd them out (you singular) (YM 112) 

tdininolka-d (inc.) herd them out (you dual) 

'adi'ltld'd (inc. cess.) turn on the light (you singular) 

'aniltsi-s (inc.) turn off the light (you singular) 

8.74. The future may be an emphatic command for immediate 
action : 

ca- di'tid-l come to me! 
di'tac let's go; we-two-will-go 
di'hah let's go; we-pl* -will-go 

bini* ca- do-gd-l let him come to me voluntarily; his-own-mind to-me 

8.75. The fourth person inceptive addressed to a second person is 
a polite informal command for immediate action. 

8.76. The fourth person future is an emphatic command of a very 
formal type. Fourth person was formerly used by adult brothers and 
sisters in address — a form of avoidance. Very few Navaho use it 
today. All other relatives may properly use second person forms for 
address and command. 

8.77-8.81. Optative 

8.77. The optative, -6- (10.82-10.82d.) has two full conjugations, 
with some additional variations due to contraction. With few ex- 
ceptions, the optative stem is not distinctive in having a form that 
differs from the other stems, but rather one of the stems already 
discussed is the optative stem and will be so marked as a principal 
part. Aspective and tense differences are absent from the optative 
conjugations but any stem from progressive to perfective may be 
the one to serve as the optative stem. 

8.78. The two main patterns for the optative prefixes are given in 
10.82 c,d. The prefix with vowel -6- is to be considered in the position 
of aspective prefix: do- "may . . . start . . .ing from," no- "may . . . 
start . . .ing to goal," etc. The second pattern, with predominantly 
long low -o*-, results from the contraction of -d-optative and com- 
pound prefixes, mainly -i/t-cessative, -t/i-repetitive, (-nd~) "in- 
flective," and {-nd-) "against." The optative meaning is the same 
as that of the -d- form "may , . . take place, may . . . move. . ., 

138 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.78.-8. 82. 

may . . .ing take place." Apparently all tense-aspect prefixes are 
leveled in the optative, which seems to retain its own form regard- 
less of time or space covered. In this respect it compares with the 
progressive, and indeed, the progressive stem is often the optative 
stem. Cessative and repetitive prefixes of form -yi- are dominant in 
that they absorb many prefixes and lower the tone of others with 
accompanying lengthening. Although -d-optative seems to be simi- 
larly dominant; it loses its tone to -yi-cessative and to yt-repetitive 
(10.82 a.). 

8.79. When the optative is preceded by a prefix with high tone 
demanding an inflectional prefix the combined vowel or vowel 
cluster is long with falling tone; a variation of the forms just dis- 
cussed (10.82a.). 

8.80. Although there are full forms for the optative and they may 
be encountered occasionally, the indicative with nsin "I wish'* is 
often heard. 

8.81. The following independent words may be used with the 
optative. They may also give an optative meaning to indicative 
forms : 

yi*la\ xi-la* . . . may . . ., but I hope not; . . . may not . . ., but I hope 

... will ... (11.40, 11.43.) 
la^na- wish it would . . . (and it may . . . ), desire to . . . (cp. la-na- 

"desire") (11.47.) 
Idgo . . . may . . . but try to prevent it, would it were not necessary 

to . . . (11.50.) 
le' may . . . be, would that it . . . but who knows (11.52.) (FS 18) 
te-ni' wish it could have . . ., there is every reason to wish that . . ., 

but it probably will not 

8.82-8.84. Interrelationship between tense, Aspect, System, 

and Mode 

8.82. An outstanding feature of the verb is the lack of a sharp line 
between stem, prefix, and meaning: The momentary stem resembles 
in many cases the progressive; the two prefix conjugations are 
distinct. The customary stem is often the same as the momentary ; 
the prefixes and conjugation are quite different. The momentary 
stem in other cases is the same as the present ; the prefix conjuga- 
tions are the same. The present stem is sometimes the same as the 
inceptive; the conjugation (yi-) may be the same, but often the 
prefixes are distinct for the inceptive. The inceptive cessative stem 
is usually the same as the inceptive ; its conjugation is quite different. 
The perfective cessative often has the same form as other perfective 
stems; its conjugation is distinctive. 

8.83.-8.85. the verb 139 

8.83. Unrestricted motion is set off from bilimited motion — start 
and finish — by principal parts, as well as by prefixes. Generally 
speaking, yi~ is a prefix of progression and continuation; even 
secondary or inflective prefixes, like -i/t-cessative and -t/t-repetitive, 
are combined with yi-continuative. The prefixes di-start from and 
rn-start for, are inceptives and contrast with such a prefix as wa-here 
and there, which is conjugated only in the present and si-perf ective. 
Categories are often complementary with representative character- 
istics of other categories. This trait is marked in the prefixes: 
Although di- designates the point of departure or the moment of 
starting an action and as such has inceptive forms, a corresponding 
prefix di- is treated as a progressive or continuative. This di- 
means something like "emit, emanate from, originate in;" if con- 
jugated in the progressive, the forms are like those of the future. In 
the future di- may be prefixed to the regular future forms with the 
pattern dido*- (3 person). If df-emit is a continuative the present and 
inceptive forms are the same, that is, di-emit and di-start from have 
the same forms — the stem alone indicates whether it is present or 
inceptive, di-inceptive takes the st-perfective, whereas dt-emit takes 
the t/i-perfective. Since eK-inceptive has inceptive cessative forms, 
it is to be noted that di- which properly has two meanings, never- 
theless is conjugated in all aspects of the verbal scheme except ni- 
perfective with whose meaning di- is antithetical. 

8.84. The prefix m-start for is as basic an aspective prefix as di- 
stort from ; its corresponding perfective is m -perfective. It has a free 
counterpart in the prefix m-end, which may be used with continua- 
tive aspects other than inceptive. It regularly takes a m-perfective, 
but it may be prefixed to some other prefix conjugated in si- 
perfective. To even up matters and distribute them fairly among the 
categories is m-uniform, which is conjugated in progressive, present, 
and *i-perfective. We might continue this discussion to include many 
other prefixes and prefix combinations, but enough has been said to 
indicate that, although stems and prefixes may be classified so as to 
explain their forms satisfactorily with few exceptions and irregular- 
ities, there are deVices to prevent categories from being defined as 
exclusive. Some of these devices elude interpretation, but many 
have been determined. 

8.85-8.91. Phonetic Character of the Verb Stem 

8.85. From the time of the earliest Athabaskan studies the question 
of stems, their similarities and differences, and of stem alternants 
has been puzzling. The foregoing determination of principal parts 
and aspects has cleared up some of the questions and has shown that 
the number of alternants is much reduced by the differentiation of 
momentary, present, inceptive, and cessative. Nevertheless, some 

[40 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.85.-8.89. 

apparently alternant forms remain. Several progressive stems have 
more than one form not explained by the difference between pro- 
gressive and future. The stems -le*l, -Ifrl, -Irl "create, make into, 
construct;" -ne -l, -ni'l, -nvl "do, happen, accomplish, change, con- 
struct, evolve, develop," are examples (10.47.). It is almost im- 
possible to determine differences in meaning and usage for these 
stems. The pair -l-ne'l and -h'l with vowel similarities sustained, 
throughout the principal parts seem to be variants of two contractual 
schemes. In one -I- either was the initial, or the initial became 
absorbed in the -Z- classifier ; in the other, -Z-causative and -^-initial 
remained intact. Since other stems show similar relationships be- 
tween Z-stem initial and -l-n-, it seems almost certain that these 
alternants may be ascribed to historical causes; they are true 
doublets in Navaho. 

8.86. t'he diversity of Navaho speech is marked in form and 
vocabulary (13-13.54.). From this fact and the number of aspects it 
seems reasonable to suppose that in Navaho many influences met, 
influences which were not equally effective in all directions. The 
stem -'cH "round obj. moves" has more forms than almost any other 
Navaho verb (12.29.). The momentary has the alternants -VA, -ah, 
and -a*h ; in the present -ah and -wh are interchangeable. The stem 
seems to be a very old one, no known Athabaskan language lacks it, 
therefore it is reasonable to suppose that it was subject to many 
changes not all similarly interpreted by all speakers. 

8.87. It is likely that proto-Athabaskan did not have pitch accent 
as a grammatical device — Mattole and Hupa do not have it now. 
There is reason to conclude that Navaho combines a great many 
features found separately in other Athabaskan languages — such a 
conclusion would account for numerous doublets. Besides differences 
in quantity and tone, the occurrence of final - and -d seems to be a 
phase of the doublet. What seem to be momentary stems have forms 
-CV and -CVd. Sometimes, however, the -CVd form seems to be 
momentary, whereas the -CV form is repetitive. Similarly, the 
perfective stem of type -CV" or -CV"' may have another form of type 
-CV, and again the one with short vowel and glottal stop is repetitive. 

8.88. It is possible that there was a stem of the -CV or -CV type, 
one or both of which were differentiated into momentary and 
repetitive, a process which may still be at work. In the light of the 
regularity of perfective cessatives as compared with ni- 9 yi* and si- 
perfectives, it seems possible that there may be other kinds of com- 
pletion, of a momentary act or motion, for example. AB distin- 
guishes a resultative which has the short vowel and glottal stop 
(type -CV), which I prefer to call a "completed momentary." 

8.89. It has already been said that the primary purpose of this 
work is the analysis of Navaho without comparison with other 

8.89.-8.92. THE VERB 141 

Athabaskan languages and with a minimum of theory about genetic 
relationships. Nevertheless comparisons have been very helpful, 
particularly in corroborating some of the analyses made with Navaho 
materials alone. It is possible that the phonetic structure of Navaho 
stems and their alternants will determine the separate influences 
which were exerted on older bases for the differentiation of the 
aspects as they now exist in Navaho. Some processes not completely 
crystallized may show what is happening, as well as what has 

8.90. At the same time that certain changes are making for 
development and differentiation, others, such as the leveling of 
cessative and repetitive forms, are destined to reduce the number of 
forms as they become more stabilized. The forces at work must be 
sifted and weighted — no opportunity was ever more favorable than 
that afforded by Navaho. On the other hand, the lack of differentia- 
tion of the "continuatives" and the premature acceptance of 
"alternants" has made comparison with other languages most diffi- 
cult, in some cases, impossible. Questions which cannot be satis- 
factorily answered are: Did the western Athabaskan languages lack 
the differentiation so outstanding in Navaho ? Was such differentia- 
tion made by the speakers without being detected by the linguists 
recording the languages ? Where did the northern languages stand 
in regard to these questions ? 

8.91. Even though the failure to realize the important problems of 
aspect and contraction is a great handicap, there are nevertheless 
indirect clues to what happened when such differentiations devel- 
oped. Two types of contraction seem to be obvious, a western type 
in which stems were more markedly affected than prefixes, and a 
northern type in which stems remained relatively stable, but in 
which the contraction affected the prefixes more outstandingly. 
Here is a tool that should help greatly in interpretation and recon- 

8.92. Augmentative 

8.92. Navaho has a relatively free augmentative process. The 
strong aspiration of a consonant may indicate large size or the 
pejorative. The process may also be looked upon as x infixed in the 
stem : 

Regular form Augmented form 

-tih cover, wrap -txih protect, conceal 

-sal move like a feathor -sxal heavy obj. (as person) moves 

like a feather, gracefully 
-zi become still, motionless, silent -zyi be dazed, paralyzed, deadened 
-si make numb -sxi paralyze, deaden 

sg' star sxg' a fearful star 

-spa glitter like copper -sxgs glitter like a red star 




Regular form 

dzq'di here 

dzil mountain 

-tsa-z grow big 

-tse- animate obj. is strong 

-tsoh be yellow 

-cd be satisfactory 

-tcah cry 

-tcah hop; animal is in heat 

tcq-'' manure, excrement, faeces 

-tcih be red 

-tcin have, exude odor 

tcin dirt, soil 

-tcp 1 nose 

-teg' bad 

-tcg-l bad, evil ; spoil, ruin 

y aMcPi one's personal effects, 

-la-l hate 

Augmented form 

dzyq'di here in' this devilish place 

dzyil a terrible mountain 

•tsxa-z grow very large 

-tsxe- animate obj. is very strong 

■tsxoh be very yellow 

<cx$ be awful, dangerous (WE) 

-tcxah scream 

-tcxah have erection, sex desire 

~tcxq*' excrement (vulgar) 

-tcxih be very red, blush 

•tcxin have strong odor 

texvn personal parts subject to 

-texj-' muzzle 

-tcxg y wicked, essentially bad 
-tcxg-l soil, pollute, discredit 
'antcxtyi personal effects subject to 

-lxa-1 (not -l-xa-l) be exasperated 

8.93-8.94. Diminutive 

8.93, Navaho has several ways of indicating smallness or imma- 
turity. There are stems with such meanings. Though the diminutive is 
not sufficiently developed to constitute a process, it should be 
recognized so as to avoid confusing stem types. The most common 
stem is of the type CVC, but there are a few bisyllabic stems ending 
in -i which is not the same as the nominalizing suffix -i "the one 
which." Most of such stems are static (8.31-8.35.). It will be noted 
that there are different modifications of the first vowel. The follow- 
ing are examples of bisyllabic diminutive stems with comparisons of 
corresponding "regular" stems when they are known. 

Stem -CVC, -CtC, -C^-C 

Stem -CVC^ 

Stem -Cv'Cv' 

'd*d female 

-ddi older sister 

di-Hl it has long 

di-ili fuzzy with long 

scattered hairs 

hairs ; ' 'fuzzy" blanket 

di-todi fragile, weak, 

di-t6'di very soft (as 

soft, flexible 

ripe fruit) 

'as-zoli light, easily 

'ds-zo-li light and 



di-kddi thin fabriclike, 

(cp. -ka*d "it is spread" 

spread thinly 


di-fdi fragile, brittle 

xone*z-Uaz weather is 

xone'Z-ltdzi weather is 



si-zili be lukewarm 

n-j6n pretty, nice 

n-joni nice, worthy 

'dltSisi, 'dltsihi small 

'dU4{*8% small (as 



-tio-z narrow 

^dl-tiozi narrow 

'dl-tdfdi smaller than, 

'dltdf'di small volume, 

less than 'dltdf'di 

very little 

8.93.-8.96. the verb 143 

Of slightly different patterns are : 

% ani-& new, recent 'ani-di very new 

'altti-d^-* long ago 'alUvdidd-*' remote 

past, merely re- 

'ayo superior, fine 'ayoi finer important, 'aydi- very fine, super- 

baffling lative 

tcil small tcili dwarfed 

8.94, Several grammatical processes already described may be 
used for augmentative or diminutive; they are specialized rather 
than free: 

-zal move featherlike -aal(<i -l-zal) float, sxal animate (heavy) 

move featherlike obj. moves lightly, 

•yol blow breath, -zol blow hard on -sol blow on lightly 

breathe on 

8.96-8.104. Irregular Verbs 

8.95. Once the numerous rules are applied, only a few verbs are 
irregular. As is to be expected, the most irregular features are 
phonetic; history would doubtless explain them. It is obvious that 
y and y initials have a different history in the various stems in which 
they appear. It has been noted that d-y > d, d-y > dz, d-y > g, and 
l~y > «s. The first person dual should always be indicated for any 
stem whose initial is y, y, z, or s to show what sound results from d 
plus any of them, for the d-passive stem complex will be the same. 
Moreover, the forms are certainly important for genetic reconstruc- 

8.96. Two general types of phonetic influence are marked: the 
influence of prefix upon prefix with various contractions, but with 
little effect on the stem, and the influence of prefix upon stem with 
resulting changes, not all of which can be explained by Navaho 
rules. From what I have done with comparative Athabaskan I 
conclude that the first is characteristic of the northern tribes (Sarsi, 
Chipewyan) ; the second influence is western (Hupa, Mattole, Kato). 
Some of these influences are probably reflected in Navaho, especially 
in irregular verbs. The two most irregular Navaho verbs are -gd'l 
"one person goes" and -yf-l "eat" (gen.). Their irregularities differ 
somewhat but point to similar influences, manifested in different 
directions. The principal parts indicate some of the irregularities: 

Prog. Mom. Pres. Inc. Pf. Opt. 


-gd'l \ , , ,_ , _ , , one person 

-gal J -V a ' h -V ah -? ath 'V a 'V a goesf walks 

144 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 8.96.-8.98. 

-ga'l so far as I can discover is an alternant of -gd'l; it is listed by 
Young-Morgan as future with n- < Twz-about, "one goes about, takes 
a trip, makes a round trip, travels" and withOfar- "go amongst . . . ." 8 
Possibly more significant than the tone of the future are the per- 
fective -yd and the optative -ya\ The following changes take place 
in the stem initial : 

Future Present 

1 de-cd-l I shall go yicdh I am going 

2 di-nd-l you will go nndk you are going 

3 dogd-l he will go yiydh he is going 

4 d/jido'gd-l he(4) will go djiydh he(4) is going 

In other words, the stem initial, whatever it may be (probably y) 
is changed, not only by-c-I, but also by n-you. In the optative, how- 
ever, the first person alone is so affected: 'o'ca J "may I go," but 
'<5-ya' "may you go," and -yet,' for all other persons (10.82a.). 

8.96a. The rf-form has the principal parts : 

Prog. Mom. Pres. Inc. Pf. Opt. 

-dd-l 1 -dd-h \ _,, ., , _ , _ , one person 

-da-l ) .da<h j ' dah ~ da ' h ' dza '** goes, walks 

From these we may conclude a relationship between d> y, g, y, and 
dz. There are precedents for these relations, but usually they are 
exclusive: If d-y > </, then d-y does not become d. If d-y > d, then 
d-y does not become dz. 

8.97. The stem -yf'l "eat" has the following principal parts: 

Mom. Pf. 

Prog. Cust . Pres . Inc . Opt . 

~yf4 -yi-h -yq, -y\-h -yd- 1 * eat (gen.) 

This verb has the same stem throughout the singular, dual, and 
plural, so that the initial changes for dual and plural may be 
ascertained. The pattern is as follows: 

Future Present 

1 de-cf-l I shall eat it 1 yicq, I am eating it 

2 di-yi-l you will eat it 2 niya you are eating it 
3-3 yido-yi'l he will eat it 3-3 yiyd he is eating it 

4 djido-yyl he(4) will eat it 4 djiyq he(4) is eating it 

Dl di'di'l we shall eat it Dl di-dq we are eating it 

D2 do-hsyl you 2 will eat it D2 dohsq you 2 are eating it 

8.98. All the stem-initial changes except -c- of the first person 
present (-c-y > -c-) may be explained by the rules of 3.63, 3.119, 
3.121. It will be noted that n-2 subject does not influence this stem 
initial, but it remains y in future, momentary, and inceptive, y in 
the present, perfective, and optative, changing to c in the first 
person only, as do many other stems. What is not explained is the 
change from y to y. 

8 Young-Morgan 1943, Navaho-English, pp. 6H, 69 

8.99-8.103. the vebb 145 

8.99. The d-form is regular, like -yf-t but with d-initial throughout, 
even in the perfective which is -d#''; this corresponds with ~df m l of 
the first person dual. 

8.100. A related form is -sf'l (< -Z-caus.-yf Z) "cause to eat, feed," 
all forms of which are like -yf'l with s instead of y initial, 

8.101. An interesting form of -yf'lisyo-yd'' "you two have eaten it," 
which confirms my theory of the order of pronouns of the perfective 
active and passive voices (10.104.). Morgan, as I have said, does not 
differentiate the second person dual active 7/i-perfective yo m - and 
the passive yo'h-. Here his form is yo m yq^ rather than yo'hsd*' which 
it would be if the analysis were «/i-prog.-m-compl.-oA-D2 subj. It is 
rather 2/i-prog.-oA-D2 subj.-m-compl. 

8.102. Verbs which become puzzling are those with initials n, ri, Z, 
I, and dl which, besides having apparently related forms, also have 
related meanings. The principal parts of these verbs, which mean 
"doing, making, constructing, creating," and the like will be found 
in 12.47. 

These stems are obviously related. They are probably explained as 
doublets — a series of stems with n initial in the -Z-causative passive 
forms may have become I instead of l-n. Although the interpreters 
say the forms have "the same" meaning, some forms have become 
fossilized and cannot be interchanged. The perfective -ya- of -nfrl is 
unexplained, as is the perfective -dza m of -we-Z. It is interesting to 
note that all classifiers except Z are used with -we*Z, that is, zero, d, 
and I ; and that -U*l occurs with all except zero, that is, with d, Z, and 
Z, if the stem be considered, as I think it should be, as an Z rather than 
as a zero form. 

8.103. The three progressive forms -ne*Z, -nvl, and -nvl, and their 
Z-counterparts seem to strengthen the possibility that -nfrl and 
~lfrl are doublets. 

These verbs are constantly confused with ~h'l and -dle'l "become, 
change, evolve" (12.53.) whose forms and meanings are so close as to 
make the confusion obvious. The principal parts however show that 
they are distinct. 

A study of other n, ri, Z, and dl stems indicates that the possibility 
of doublets may be extended to other verbs, but those just discussed 
have the most satisfactory series for comparison. Compare for 
instance the following : 








•ni 1 
-ni'h ) 

-nih 1 
-nih ) 

-nih 1 
-ni'h J 



be suspicious about some- 


thing definite 


-li \ 
•li'h J 

-li'h \ 
4%-h ) 



suspect, have definite 


suspicion (YM 133, 134) 

146 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 8.103.-8.104. 

Since the forms for "be suspicious" are few and complicated m 
pattern (cp. 10.121-10.121d.), they merely point to the possibility 
of doublets ; they do not confirm it. 

8,104. Many Navaho verbs, often those most commonly chosen to 
illustrate English, are irregular in structure, particularly in the basic 
meaning of the verb stem. This is a fact fundamentally related to 
meaning, as well as morphology, and is therefore syntactic. A few 
examples are given here to show why apparently simple English 
words cannot be easily understood without psychological change. 
Words expressing percepts are in this category. "See" is a word that 
comes readily to mind. Two basic stems, phonetically and morpho- 
logically unrelated, must be mastered : 

sight moves, get sight 

into motion 

be visible 

pause in sighting, keep 

eye on, view (cess.) (YM 


Of these -jrl is essentially inceptive, and some of its forms do not 
fall readily into any prefix category (10.107.). Phonetically the 
stems -\'l and -({'I behave normally. 

-tse'l is not irregular, but is a cessative — future, customary, in- 
ceptive and perfective. Whereas -i*l and -fyl denote "moving the 
sight, look at," -tse-l means "see" in the sense of "sight pauses." The 
proper usage of words formed with these stems must be learned by 





Pf., Opt. 


Inc. cess. 

Pf. cess. 


- 9 i 


-T (opt.) 

-*i m d 



W (opt.) 










9. The discussion of The Word indicated the existence of an 
adjective in Navaho, even though many descriptive functions inhere 
in the verb stem. Such forms are not modified by conjugation or 
comparison, but some resemble verbs in having static and progres- 
sive forms, for instance : 

*adi y (stat.) well bred 

y adi (prog.) becoming worthy, deserving, desirable, outstanding, rare 

(pretty), superlative 
J acfe (stat.) calm, tranquil, soothing, composed 
'acffr (prog.) changing to calm, tranquil, quieting down 
xacte y (stat.) normal, orderly, regular, usual 
xacti- (prog.) changing (from out of order) to normal, usual, orderly 

Of other adjectives but one form has been found: 

''aid- pretending 

'aydhi harmful, unlucky 

'ayo unusually good 

'ayoi important, baffling 

ba-H bad, unpleasant 

to* alternating 

td-gi'd bare, naked, stripped 

t\-d curbed 

ntc^i ugly, inappropriate, unsuitable 

yd out of place, shameful, embarassing (perhaps "shame, embar- 

kd careless, impulsive 

si cheerful, hopeful, reassuring; disastrous, harmful 

tsiUe worthy, deserving, desirable, outstanding, rare (pretty), super- 

lsi-d tolerable, worthwhile, fair; worthy of notice; tolerant, normal (in 
character), level-headed; nice, agreeable, pleasing 

nolle* irritable, cantankerous, cranky, irascible 

yi- becoming feeble, wearing out, discouraging, weakening, frustrating, 

9.1, Some of these adjectives, which are placed just before the 
verb, may be related to the stem -fe f l "be" but since 'dfe "it is" 
follows many of them, it hardly seems likely; or if they are, the 
significance of -te'l must be lost. 

9.2. Another small class of adjectives is treated like a possessed 
noun, there being only one stem which is modified by prefixing 
"possessive (objective)" pronouns: si-tee* "I am strong," ni-tse* 
"you are strong," xa-tse* "he(4) is strong," nixi-tst' "we, you two are 

11 Eelchard 147 

148 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 9.2.-9.5. 

strong." Such stems with possessive forms define attributes so 
closely related to the object or subject that they are treated as 
inalienable possessions. The following have been noted: 

•Hli be valuable, have value 

-nd'l y -nfyl witness, be present at 

~ni y sad, worried (cp. -nV "mind") 

•hi-n serve as subsistence 

-dzi-l inanimate object is firm, resistant; person has power, there is 

•tii-ni be very thin, skinny, bony (cp. tMn "bone") 
•djd-d fleet, swift (cp. djd-d "leg") 

The small number of stems treated in this way suggests that the 
form is a survival of an old nominal tendency, or less likely, that it 
is the beginning of a new process not fully developed. 

9.3. Generally," those words which in English describe physical 
condition, quality, and state are treated as verbs, perhaps with 
static forms. Uninflected words that precede a verb apply to general 
conditions, mental states, summary of circumstances, or results. 
Usually they do not contain the prefix xo- which refers to "place" 
or ' 'circumstances, things" and is frequently used in other com- 

9.4-9.12. Comparison 

9.4. Comparison may be expressed in several ways, none very 
closely related to comparison in English. We have seen that many 
expressions, which in English are adjectival, are verbal in Navaho; 
di' 'e*' nne'z "this garment is long;" Iftsoh "big horse." It is reason- 
able then that comparative and superlative degrees may be ex- 
pressed by modifying words that precede the verb, behaving as 
"adverbs." In addition, the verb may have a "comparative" prefix 
conjugation, a construction used if the comparison refers to what in 
English would be an "adjectival' ' expression (cp. y dn- 10.79, 

di- 'e*' ci-ld-k *dnln6-z this garment is too long for me; this garment 

me-beyond is-relatively-long 
bi-ld-h "'dn&rU'z I am taller than he; him-beyond I-am-relatively-tall 
yi-ld-h ^dnlnfrz it (pole) is longer than he; he is taller than he(FH) 
bHi'* di' If-* bild'h 'dnltsoh his horse is larger than this horse; his-horse 

this horse it-beyond is-relatively-large 
di' V-' ci'oh 'dnlnfrz this garment is too short for me; this garment 

me-missing is-relatively-long 
bil{-' > di- If-' bVoh 'dnltsoh his horse is smaller than this horse; his-horse 

this horse it-missing is-relatively-large 

9.5. If, however, the comparison refers to a verb of motion or 
activity, the usual verb form is used with a modifier, which would 
be in the class of "adverb" in English. In Navaho such words may 

9.5.-9.11. THE ADJECTIVE 149 

be postpositional, the one compared being the possessive-objective 
prefix : 

ni~la'hgo dinicyo' I can run faster than you; being-beyond-you I-got- 

cidjigo dinicyo' ni td-' Vo& I can run faster than you; being-on-my-side 

I-run you just-miss-something 

9.6. The superlative is expressed by more emphatic modifiers than 
the comparativie, usingthe same verbal conjugation "relative-to . . . " : 

bity* 'ald-kdi 'dMtsoh his horse is the largest, his-horse beyond-some 

(other) is-relatively-large 
bU{'* 'ayd-di 'dnltsoh his horse is the largest, his-horse the-chief(favor- 

ite) -one is-relatively-large 
xaW "alQ-djj* nli-ni- her(4) oldest brother; her(4)-sibling-of-opposite- 

sex ahead the-particular-one-who-is (WE) 

9.7. Some comparisons require long circumlocutions: 

niyando- ciyan bitcfgi kodo- nariijo-jidjV 'dnzd-d it is as far from your 
home to mine as it is from here to Gallup; your-home-from ray- 
home between-them-place from-here Gallup-to-a-point it-is-rela- 

9.8. The element yd is common to the following constructions : 

'ayo 'dnsne'-z I am the tallest (FH) 

'ayo 'dnlni-z it (rope, stick) is longer (FH) 

'ayo 'dnzd-d it is farther (FH) 

9.9. biyo somewhat, quite, a bit, something short of: 

td- la-' biyd de-stta'Z it seems a bit cold (FS 29) 

td- biy6ilJ6id$- go-'q- (a ridge) that was almost a hill (NT 390: 10) 

td- biyo doinzingd- (< do* yinzingo-) he was somewhat unwilling (NT 

td- biyo ndzbq-s sity" (his eyes) became rounder (NT 40:20) 
td- biyo de-Vf-' he (old man) suspected it (that old woman was young 

man's lover) (NT 40:25) 
td- biyo ndcineT^h he (Ute) looked at me (Navaho girl) suspiciously 

(NT 334:18) 
'asdzdni *4i to- biyo tdide-ldlo' the woman smiled tantalizingly ; the- 

woman that-one somewhat she-broke-out-into-a-smile 

9.10. The following seems to indicate a conjunctive, rather than 
an adverbial use of yd; the repeated use of the locative rile' "farther 
over there" indicates the comparative idea: 

nidzi-sne'dd- Mi- xdhgo-ci- tse be- nli- le-j td- yd bit Hlta-nidjizi-dgo bil 
dji-Ud-ni-' yah*anidjo-dzd she(4) pounded him into pieces further 
(then) with a stone having mixed him (his pieces) with sand after 
grinding the pieces and sand together she(4) came back in; she(4)- 
pounded him-completely there completely (awfully) stone by- 
means-of-it over-there earth absolutely quite accompanying-them 
(pieces and earth) after-she-ground-them she(4)-came-back-in 

9.11. The complex to- tse'edin expresses steady diminution. Young 
and Morgan suggest with a query the analysis "merely no rocks" 
for this. I suggest that tse'edin may be related to the group of words : 

150 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 9.11 .-9.14. 

tsi-de supine, lying face upward (cp. -de, or del "upward") 

tsd'-ya- prone, lying face downward (cp. -ya* "under, underneath") 

tad'-nct,' across 

9.12. On the other hand, tse'Sdin may derive from tei-uncertain, 
confused (10.120a.). The translation would then be "uncertainty is 
lacking, it is (now) certain that (things are becoming worse) ;" 

'alniHVQ-go to- ts&idin nikixoMt$ at noon it began to rain harder than 
ever; it-being-noon rainy-conditions-worsened (FS 29) 

be 1 nixit6f 'dndaxaztfi- to- tatfidindanfrai-lnaxalin our problems seem 
to get progressively worse; the-particular-things-with-which-we- 
are-bothered just worse are-prog. -growing it-is-like (FS 29) 

^olta* nixitah xolonigi- to- ts&ddin danixitiq)^ y M6f ' dibda-lne y go y dti our 
school situation is becoming steadily worse, our schools continue to be 
closed; (such)-schools-as-we-have just worse away-from-us toward- 
one-another being-(in-a-state-of)-relative-change it-is-thus (FS 29) 

dji'dtf,'' tiiyd to* tsi'idinda xacttic xazly y Id today the mud has become 
worse (if anything) (though yesterday it was bad enough) ; today- 
past only worse-if-anything mud has-become to-be-sure (FS 29) 

9.13-9.22. Numerals 

9.13. Numerals are treated like ajectives (9.). As independent 
forms they may precede a noun or verb, thus behaving as "adjec- 
tives," or they may have -go the subordinating suffix, and seem to 
be "verbs": 

td- y yisk$ three days passed 
na-kigo ndtoh two cigarettes 

9.14. The cardinal numbers are: 

ld y i, td-ldH one 

na'ki two 

td^ three 

d{* y four 

y acdla y five 

xaatfyh six 

taostdid seven 

tse'bi- eight 

ndxdatti- nine 

n&znql'h ten 

la' ~tSd*dah 9 Id-tdd-dah eleven 

ncfki-tdddah, na-ki-tdwdah twelve 

td- y -tdd-dah thirteen 

df- -tdd-dah fourteen 

y acdla y -d-dah f y acdla y -a'dah fifteen 

xa&td-'d-dah sixteen 

tao8tdid-tdd-dah seventeen 

tae'b(- -tdd-dah eighteen 

ndxdat&i- -tda-dah nineteen 

na--di-n twenty; two-tens 

na--dy la y twenty-one; two- tens one 

rw-di' nct'ki twenty -two; two-tens two 

9.14.-9. 17 rag ABJECTIVE 151 

na * ( ^f. td-' twenty-three; two-tens three 

na '^i> d\-" twenty-four; two-tens four 

nat< H- 'acdW twenty -five; two-tens five 

na ' ( ^- xastq-h twenty-six; two-tens six 

na 'dy tsostiid twenty-seven; two-tens seven 

na '^Y tse-by twenty-eight; two-tens eight 

n f' &Y ndxdatii- twenty -nine; two-tens nine 

^"^•n, tdh-di-n thirty; three-tens 

diz ~Hi-n forty; four- tens 

dizi la\ dizdi-n do- ba'q- td-ld-H forty-one; four-tens plus one 

' acd \a-din, "acdW-di-n fifty; five-tens 

xa8t, %-di-n sixty; six-tens 

i808 fyi-di'n seventy; seven-tens 

tse M-di-n eighty; eight-tens 

te'l&hadi ne-znd-di-n one hundred; once ten-tens 

na 'k'idi ne-zna-di-n two hundred; twice ten-tens 

td-di ne^zna-di-n three hundred; three-times ten-tens 

To few, ^nmWs from 100 to 1000 suffix -di "times" to the 
regular cardinal numbers : 

1000 fd'ldhd-di mid (or mid, from Spanish mil "thousand"); one times 
a thousand 

1,000,000 fdddhd-di midtsoh one-times big-thousand; or ne'znQ bike' 
sild (old word probably for large number) 

1,000,000,000 fd-ldH-di mi-l-di mid ntsa-higi the-one-that-is-one-times 
a-thousand-times a-large-thousand 

dzididi-n-di a given very large number (AB) 

dzidi-di-n-di 'aVq'h millions and millions, uncounted units, an incred- 
ibly large number 

9.15. As -di expresses "times," so do* ba'a-n, or do* ba 9 q y or do* 
expresses "plus, more than, and" : 

353 td'-di ne'zn<j,-di*n do- befa-n 7 acdla-di-n dd- ba'a-n td- y three-times 
ten-tens and in-addition five-tens and in-addition three 

1949 td-ldhd-di mid do- ba?a-n ndxdstii'-di ne-znq-dvn do- ba'a'ti diz-dvn 
do- ba*a*n ndxdstei' one-time a-thousand and in-addition nine- 
times ten-tens and in-addition four-tens and in-addition nine 

9.16. Ordinals are indicated by using the cardinals followed by 
gone' or goneHgi* : 

ld-H gone" the first one (cp. 'dtsi, 'dltst "the first one preceding") 
td*\ or td'i gone' the third one 

9.17. Numerals, like many other elements, may become verbal 
prefixes conjugated with the pattern of 10.78.; in the following 
paradigm the stem is -lah "one," the dual prefixes indicating "two 

of . . . ;" together, they result in the meaning "both of " fix* 

"just" is a formal element used with this combination: 

Dl td- 'dni'dlah both of us; just two-ones (FH) 

D2 td- 'dnclah both of you 

D3 td' 'dlah both of them (cp. y dlah nvdly' "they assembled, one 

they -became") 
D4 td- 'ddjilah both of them(4) 

152 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 9.17.-9.21. 

Other stems used with the same element tw and the same con- 
jugation are: -He " . . . all are, just all of . . . ;" and -i-tso ". . . are 
all; just . . . are all" (YMG). Compare with these td-'dtdgigo na'ane 
"just three families moved an" (NT 352 : 3). 

9.18. In the following examples the prefix combination n-dini- is 
treated like dmi-static (10.89.), and the meaning is " . . .two are" : 

Dl ndinvlti we two are 
D2 ndinolti you two are 
D3 ndilt6 they two are 
D4 nijdilti they(4) two are 

Compare: nazdilte two of them(4) (are sent) (NT 84:11; 260:1; 

xa'oh ne-r$-go ba- ndajdilfe*go if the number (of animals) is less (than 
the number of men) two are set (to work on) one animal (NT 328 : 18) 

9.19. Other related numerical conjugations have the numeral, 
sometimes in shortened form, prefixed to regular conjugations. If 
the numeral has a high tone, the conjugation is of (-nd-) form (cp. 
however, xastq- yilfe "there were six" FH) : 

Dl idni'lti we three 

D2 tanolti you three 

D3 tdlfe they three 

D4 tddjilti three of them(4) 

Dl dfni'lfe we four 

D2 d\nolti you four 

D3 dilti they four 

D4 didjilt'6 four of them(4) 

tddjilt'6 ndzi-ztd'djV three (runners) sitting at intervals (NT 86:4) 
didjilM na-fd-ni- four chiefs were there (NT 96:21) 
ne-zndlU there were ten (NT 56: 13; 316:7) 
dokwiltl however many, there were few (NT 270: 14) 

9.20. The form for "there are five" is 'aedlalfe, presumably because 
the final a of 'acdla' is low and combines with yi- of yilte, that is, it 
does not require the (-nd-) prefix. On the other hand, there may be 
two conjugations — (-nd-) and yi- with different meanings: 

y cdt6ici' xastq- yilti there were six on each side (FH) 
na-kitSd-da yilfi-go there were twelve (FW 297, n. 134) 

9.21. Numerals with a high-toned vowel may be prefixed also to 
the si-(nd-) perfective conjugation (10.117a.): 

bil tdsHte' with (including) him there were three of us (NT 374: 17) 
tddjiste* three of them(4) (were heard) (NT 264:10) 
didzisfc four of them(4) (were heard) (NT 264:11) 

The $i-perfective of n-dini-st&tic continuative used for "two," is 
nazdvsfc' "two of them(4) (were heard) (NT 264: 9). 

9.22-9.23. THE ADJECTIVE 153 

9.22. When a total is to be expressed the postposition -I is used; 

tsa'dazi* hit td' y &*•' xo-yan "the yucca is the third in which there was a 

house; yucca with-it three in-it there- is-a-dwelling (NT 42:2) 
to,* bil td-' yiskd with it just three days had passed 

9.23. Money 

9.23. Money is of interest as a part of the numerical system. The 
units are based on a currency system in vogue after the Civil War. 
The dollar is b&so, or be* so (from Spanish peso). Parts of the dollar 
are expressed as "bits," each being equivalent to twelve and a half 
cents, that is, two to a quarter. There is no unit of one bit, but a 
quarter is na*ki-ya*l> or na'ki-yd'l "two bits;" a half dollar is df'ya'l, 
or df-yd-l "four bits;" zasty-ycfl or xastq'-yd-l "seventy-five cents, 
six bits." 

The nickel, litsoh "it is yellow," and the dime, do-tiij "it is blue," 
are named from paper money of the several colors, gvnisi (YM 86) or 
kvnsi (Pinyon) "fifteen cents," is from Spanish quince "fifteen." 
A penny is sindao or tsindao from Spanish centavo. 

With these units, especially nickel, dime, bit, and dollar, reckon- 
ing is done : 

df'-ya-l do* litsoh (for dyyad do- bd'a'n litsoh) fifty-five cents; two-bits 
and a nickel 

na'ki dotlij twenty cents; two-blue-(ones) 

di-ya-l do* bcfa-n fd-ldH do-tlij do- td-' sindao sixty -three cents; four- 
bits and in-addition one blue-(one) and three cents 

td- do-tiij do- ba'a-n Itsoh thirty-five cents, three blue-(ones) and a 

10-10.124. PREFIXES 

10. Prefixes of all kinds, classifiers, and stems are so closelyknit 
that all processes by means of which they are combined should be 
clarified at the same time. The stem complex has been defined as 
classifier and stem ; this must first be ascertained in order to deter- 
mine the pronouns to be used. If the pronouns are active voice 
subjects or passive agents they generally stand immediately before 
the stem complex, but if objects or passive subjects, they stand 
before the conjugated prefixes, since prefixes are conjugated. How- 
ever, more than one prefix may enter into the conjugation and cer- 
tain elements may separate them. The position of such elements and 
the fact that some may seem to disappear entirely in contraction 
are principles that must be understood. The prefix components, 
generally of the form CV, VC, but sometimes merely C, will be first 
discussed, then the principles of combination (10.35-10.74.). The 
scheme is to work backward from the stem complex insofar as it is 
feasible. However, since subjective-agentive pronouns occupy a 
position different from that of objective and passive subjects, and 
since the position of these pronominal prefixes may be determined 
by their phonetic character, pronouns are discussed together despite 
their position; in some other cases, too, the compounds must be 
treated together for the same reasons. 

10.1-10.14. Position of Pronominal Prefixes 

10.1. With few exceptions pronouns of the intransitive and of the 
transitive active voice, and passive agents immediately precede the 
stem. The exceptions are the fourth person, the indefinite singular 
forms, and the perfective subjects. The position and function of the 
subjective and agentive pronouns in the complex are discussed in 
the following order: 1, 2, 3, D3, 4, D4, Dl, D2. 

10.2. First person singular subject or agent, -c-, stands just before 
the stem complex on w T hich it may have phonetic effects (3.82-3.97.). 

10.3. In the perfective passive -c-agent has the same position and 
absorbs the classifier -I- : 

m-pf. by 1 nic- (K m-pf.-ni-compl.-c-l ag.) 

yi-pf, by 1 yic- (<! ^-prog.-wi-compl.-c-l ag.) 

si-pf. by 1 sis- (< ai-pf.-ni-compl.-c-l ag.) 

pf.cess. by 1 yvc- (< yi-prog.-yi-ceas.-wi-compl.-c-l ag.) 


10.4.-10.8. PREFIXES 155 

10.4. Intransitive and transitive active voice perfectives have the 
pattern si=pf.-c-l subj.-m'-compl. > s&-\ the resulting contracted 
prefix differs with the character of the perfective : 

wi-pf. 1 ni- (< m-pf.-c-l subj.-wi-compl.) 

yi--pf. 1 yi- (< yt-prog.-c-l subj.-ni-compL) 

at-pf. 1 si- (<C si-pf.-c-l subj.-wi-compl.) 

pf. cess. 1 yi'- (< yt-prog.-yi-cess.-c-l subj.-wi-compl.) 

10.5. Second person singular subject or agent, -n- or ni- in all 
aspects, except perfective, intransitive and transitive active voice, 
stands before the stem complex, -n- often combines with a preceding 
aspective or inflectional prefix. If it does, -n- persists in the high 
tone of the resulting prefix, if the preceding prefix has a low tone. 
If however the preceding prefix is high -n~2 subject may not be 
discernible : 

cont. 2 ni- (< yi-cont.-w-2 subj.) 
inc. 2 wi-, n- (< m-start for-n-2 subj.) 
inc. 2 di- (< dt-start from-w-2 subj.) 

10.6. In the perfective intransitive and transitive active voice the 
second person singular subject stands between the perfective com- 
ponents — si-pf.-7i-2 subj.-m'-compl. — and results in a form sini- 
indistinguishable from that of the agentive: 

rn-pf. 2 yini- (< m-pf.-n-2 subj.-wi-compl.) 
yi-pf. 2 yini- (< yi-prog.-n-2 subj.-wi-compl.) 
si-pf. 2 sini- (< si-pf.-n-2 subj.-wi-compl.) 

10.7. Third person singular and dual subject of intransitive and 
transitive active voice is wanting (zero) in all aspects. However, its 
absence affects the aspective-inflectional prefixes in various ways 
depending upon their phonetic structure and powers of combination. 
So important is the absence of the third person subject that the 
third person form is often of prime significance in assigning a form 
to a paradigm. The third person should always be checked with 
other forms to determine the potentialities of the compound 
aspective prefixes, for instance, dim-emit static has the first person 
dinic- y but the third di-; dini-be stuck while moving uniformly 
continuative has the first person dinic-, and the third, dini- ; dini-be 
stuck starting for inceptive has the first person dinic-, but the third, 
dv- (10.89-10.89i.). 

10.8. Third person singular and dual agent seems to be -yi- and 
has the usual position immediately preceding the stem complex. It 
is often absorbed by preceding prefixes but shows particularly in the 
progressive and progressive {yi-) perfective: 

(< yi-pvog.-yi-Z ag.) 

(< yi-Z pass. subj.-«/*-prog.-2/i-3 ag.) 


3 yi- 


by 3 yo-- 


3 by 3 yiyo-- 

156 NAVAH0 GBAMMAE 10.8.-10.13. 

yi-pf. 3 yi- (<C yi-prog.-m-compl.) 

yi-j>f. by 3 yi- (<! yt-prog.-ni-compl.-2/i-3 ag.) 

yi'pf. 3 by 3 yo>- (< yi-3 pass.subj.-yi-prog.-ni-compl.-i/t-3 ag.) 

The examples from yi-perfective are extremely important in 
showing the dominance of the low tone of yi-3 agent ; it is so strong 
that it may absorb yi- and results in low yi-. Combined with yi-3 
passive subject and yi-m'-perfective in the 3 by 3 form, it results in 
-tr- forms which occur in no other perfectives, but show the relation 
of 2/i-progressive and yi- the progressive component of yi-ni-per- 

10.9. Fourth person singular and dual subject, dji- intransitive 
and transitive active voice: The subject dji- has a position as near 
initial as possible to the conjugated part of the verb complex. It may 
absorb or contract with many prefixes having y, x, or s initial; often 
their normal position changes so that they are absorbed by it. dp- 
does not, however, contract with many prefixes whose initials 
are - or n. 

10.10. Indefinite singular and dual subject 'a- of intransitive and 
transitive active voice: 'a- because of its phonetic composition 
stands at the beginning of a conjugation. It combines with certain 
aspective prefixes, particularly those with n initial to form a differ- 
ent vowel, for instance, 'a-m-start for > H- (10.75, 10.103, 10.104.). 

10.11. Indefinite singular and dual agent of passive voice: There 
are two forms, 9 a- and 'adi- of the indefinite agent. If it stands 
before a prefix to which it can attach itself, as for example, ni- 
uniform, 'a- is used; if not, particularly if the distinction of the 
following prefix is to be preserved, the form is 'adi-, -di- being a 
glide -syllable which is the conjugated element. The indefinite agent 
is illustrated by the forms: 

di-start from inc. (3) by ibi'ti- (< bi~ [3] pass, subj.-'a-i ag.-di-startfrom) 
m-uniform cont. (3) by i bi'fini-(<. bi- [3] pass.subj.-'adi-i ag.-rn-uniform) 
m-start for inc. (3) by i bi'fe-- (< bi- [3] pass.subj.-'adt-i ag.-ru-start for) 

10.12. First person dual subject and agent, -vd-: To judge by the 
long vowel and its relative stability, the pronoun -vd- is a compound 
form, for it has such absorptive power that many dual first person 
forms are the same. Outstanding is the result of final -d- in its effect 
on following consonants, either classifiers or stem initials, or both. 
•i'd- shows no change of position in the perfectives in active or 
passive voice, though for the sake of consistency I perhaps should 
have written it in the same position as the other pronouns. 

10.13. Second person dual subject or agent, -oh-: These pronouns 
behave like the subjective-agentive pronouns of the first and second 
persons singular. In the same cases, as subject of intransitive and 

1043.-10.20. PREFIXES 157 

transitive active voice of all but the perfectives, it immediately 
precedes the stem complex. Its final consonant, however, affects the 
classifier or stem initial or both (3.112-3.133.). 

10.14. As subject in the perfective -oh- stands between the two 
components of the perfective and -h- disappears in forms like D2 of 
the si-perfective : so r - (< si-pf.-oA-D2 subj.-m-compl.) compared 
with by D2 of the si-perfective, 80*h~ (< si-m-compl.-oA-D2 ag.) 
(cp. 10.55.). 

10.15-10.20. Objective Prefixes 

10.15. The objective pronoun is prefixed to the conjugated part of 
the verb complex. The objects are: 

1 ci- me 

2 ni- you 

3 yi- him, her, it 
(3) bi- him, her, it 

4 xo~ him, her 

i 'a- some, some one, something 
Dl, D2 nixi-, nxi- us 

10.16. All except xo- of the fourth person and Vindefinite have a 
vowel of the same value in combination so that, instead of the form 
given in the regular paradigm of the type 3-3, the initial is changed 
to indicate an object other than the third. Ft instance, yiyq "he 
is eating it ;" ciyq "it is eating me." As usual, however, the phon- 
etic character of object and aspective prefixes may cause a change 
of length or tone of the resulting vowel. 

10.17. xo-object of the fourth person is often prefixed to the 
paradigmatic forms, but enters into combination with some, its 
vowel -o- creating contractions somewhat different from the pre- 
fixes with -i-vowel, but nevertheless following rules similar to those 
for other prefixes with o- (cp., for instance, #o-place, things 10.116a- 

10.18. The order of prefixes in a verb complex including an object 
is object-aspective-subject-stem complex. 

10.19. The subject of the verb in the passive voice is the same as 
the subject of the verb in the active voice. It occupies the same 
position, combines in the same way with the aspective prefixes, but 
if the form demands an agent in addition to a subject, certain 
phonetic modifications occur which are obvious from the paradigms. 

10.20. The order of prefixes in the passive verb is subject-aspec- 
tive-agent-stem complex. 

158 navaho grammar 10.21.-10.24. 

10.21-10.24. Aspbotive-Inf eotional Prefixes 

10.21. Before the pronominal subject-agent prefix stands the 
aspeotive prefix which may include or give place to the inflectional 
prefix discussed in 10.25-10.26. The arrangement of the paradigms 
in alphabetical order has necessitated listing some of the more 
complicated prefix compounds first. There are, however, certain 
simpler and more fundamental prefixes which must be understood 
to get the pattern of conjugation. They are ^-progressive, yi-con- 
tinuative (momentary, present, inceptive), the inceptives 'a-beyond, 
di-start from, ni-start for. The essential prefix compounds are di- 
future (with yi-progressive), the perfectives ni-(ni-), yi-(ni-)> and 
si-(ni-) t and the cessatives yi-(yi-) inceptive cessative, and yi-(yi- 
ni-) perfective cessative. It is suggested that the contractions of 
these aspects be first mastered, then the other contractions may be 
readily understood, even though they sometimes become quite 

10.22. Certain other prefixes of frequent occurrence like di-emit, 
m-uniform belong to the progressive -continuative system and are 
conjugated in that pattern. Others like dtm-prolongative and dini- 
get stuck at, *&-{n&-) "thus", nd-(n&-) "back/' and nd-(nd~) "against" 
are also frequent; they are compounds into which the essential 
prefixes just mentioned may enter. Those with high tone must be 
understood as including the inflectional prefixes discussed in 

10.23. It has been deemed best to list the conjugation of each 
prefix in the order given in the tense-aspect system, that is, insofar 
as possible in the order of the principal parts. By so doing the 
relationship of the progressive-continuative, inceptive, and cessative 
systems is shown. By following each continuative with the related 
perfective, the morphological-semantic functions become clearer. 
Often it will be found that the same stems are used in conjugations 
belonging to the same system. Thus progressive, continuative and 
progressive perfect (yi-pf.) distinguish themselves from inceptives 
which often take m-perfective. Similarly, the cessatives of future, 
inceptive, and perfective show their affiliation, as do the xi- and 
2/i-repetitives. Future and inceptive cessatives, for example, have 
perfective cessatives, whereas repetitives may take any of the three 
basic perfectives. 

10.24. Following the simpler conjugations of each prefix are those 
with which the prefix may be compounded, listed as closely as 
possible in alphabetical order. Though doubtless incomplete, they 
furnish samples of many contraction patterns. 

10.25.-10.27. prefixes 159 

10.25-10.26. Inflectional Prefixes 

10.25. A small category of prefixes has been called "inflectional" 
because the prefixes, though secondary, greatly influence the con- 
jugation, especially in the determination of the vowel and its tone. 
They are always used in connection with another prefix which may 
immediately precede or may be separated by intervening prefixes. 
Inflectional prefixes are written in parenteses ( ) or brackets [ ]. In 
some cases the meaning of the inflectional prefix is clear, in others, 
no meaning can be assigned. For instance, (-nd-) of nd-(nd-) "back" 
cannot be translated, but {nd-) of nd-(nd-) "against" has the mean- 
ing of the entire complex. The paradigms, 10.93a-10.95m. show how 
these inflectionals affect the other prefixes in their vicinity, -ni- 
completive, which enters into combination with ni-, yi-, and si- 
perfectives is represented without the parentheses because its 
meaning differentiates it; it behaves in the same way as (-nd-) of 
nd-(nd-) but is found only in perfectives. 

10.26. Intermediate between aspective and inflectional prefixes 
are the cessatives, and the repetitive (-yi-). Since 2/i-cessative 
appears in the future, it has characteristics of a regular aspective 
prefix, but since it does not occur without an aspective, it is treated 
as inflectional and indicated with two hyphens (-yi-). The repetitive 
of aspect (-yi-) is comparable. Sometimes ^-repetitive action is its 
pre-inflectional counterpart, but since xi- and -yi- each have con- 
jugations, and since one may appear without the other, they seem 
to be distinct, probably because of their position in the verb com- 
plex, (-yi-) "repetitive aspect" however does not occur without an 
aspective prefix, which it follows, and in this respect is an inflectional 
prefix. The two repetitive conjugations, ori-repetitive action and 
-yi-repetitive aspect, illustrate the effect of position; xi- is followed 
by the aspective prefix, -yi- is preceded by it. 

10.27-10.34. Pre-Paradigmatic Prefixes 

10.27. The group of prefixes called "pre-paradigmatic" is a class 
with meanings so varied that they cannot be semantically classified. 
The largest number are, however, adverbial or locative. These pre- 
fixes do not always enter into the conjugation, although they may 
if the verb complex is short, in which case these prefixes come into 
contact with the conjugated prefixes. ?^-about stands far forward in 
the verb complex, yet it may be conjugated as may efa-down, xa-up 
out, and m-end. The list of these prefixes includes some which are 
described as nominal prefixes, as enclitics, or as paradigmatic 
forms — they belong in the category here under discussion when they 
are separated from the conjugated aspective-inflectional prefixes. 
The following are some of these prefixes: 

160 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.27. 

'a-beyond, into indefinite space (to be di§tingui§h@d from 'a=indefinite 

pronoun 10.75-10.76w.) 
aa-plural 10.84. 

da- with verbs of dying (conjugated like rfa-down 10.84.) 
da-down, downward from 10.84. 

da/t-forth, forward; suspended, without obvious support, lying on 
da-ill front of, in orifice 
de-, dei-upward from 
di-emit, emanate from (conjugated like di-start from, but occurs in 

aspects other than inceptive) 10.88— 10.88g. 
di-relating to f ire, smoke (probably from dzi-away cp. 10.119.) 
£d-amongst, about amongst members of a group or crowd 
td-on water, relating to water 
2^* -in deep water 

na-about, here and there, at random 10.92. 
na-start down for (conjugated like da-down) 10.85. 
nani-across definite object or space 
wanVacross indefinite space 

na--at an angle, tipping; around a fixed point (cp. 7.55.) 
nd-back; temporarily around a point, in an arc 10. 93-10. 94h. 
nd--again 10.96-10.96a. 

ni-horizontal and parallel to the ground (YMG 68) 

yah'a-into an enclosure (conjugated like 'a-beyond) 
yd -up toward sky; good 
yd- with verbs of speaking 

yo-'a-out of sight, off, lost (conjugated like 'a-beyond) 
&a-ailing, sickly 
&d-closely fitted 

kd-, xd-going after, reaching for (cp. ~kd 7.77.) 
^•-dwelling, having home at 

&i-(< &i-touching-nd-against) leaning against 

/^-courtesy, proper treatment of relatives (probably from /^-security) 

Mi-sever, apart 

ica-up out (conjugated like da-down) 10.85. 
#d-, Ad-after, reaching for, going for (cp. 7.77) 
ico-place, space; things (are) 10.116a— 10.116t. 
si-harm, undo, un- . . . 10.118a— 10.1 18h. 
soh- 7 si-hope, entreaty, despair, danger (YMG 69, NT 178: 1) 
dzi- (may become di-) away (conjugated like di-start from) 10.88. 
dzidza-'mto fire, into danger 

2st-one step away, one step in front 
/si-uncertain, confused 

tea-irritable, cantankerous, cranky, peevish; frightening 
tdi-noise, sound of . . . 

d/t-attitude, emotion 
/ca-shadow, shade 
2cd-above rim ( ?) 
tco~ y £ci--useful 

Jca-off into restricted zone (less indefinite than 'a-beyond) 
2d*- out 

10.28._io.29. prefixes 161 

10.&S Tko preooding prefixes are monosyllabic, or if they have 
two syllables, each can usually be literally translated. The following 
are compound prefixes which have a meaning only when used to- 
gether; other prefixes may come between the two components. 
Some of the meanings are very doubtful : 

'a;r^-(< 'aa^-together-nd-back-[nd-]) back in a circle, back completing 

'atod-(nd-)back and forth 
'd-(nd-)thus 10.79-10.80i. 

Oi-(< 0-nd-against-[wd-])against . . . 10.95f— 10.95m. 
dini-he stuck . . .ing 10.89-10.89i. 
di-staxt against 10.90a— 10.90c. 
dini -prolongative 10.91— 10.91e. 

nd-(nd-)back; in cycle, circle; customary 10.93a— 10.94h. 
nd- (nd-)against 10.95-lQ,&5m. 
m-nt-get stuck moving uniformly to end 
nt-ru-start for e,n& 
2/ini-doubtful destination 
yini-subject and object have reciprocal effect on each other 

10.29. Many prefix combinations have literal meanings and are 
therefore not listed. Others, however, modify the meaning of the 
complex in a way that is not at all obvious. Some of these com- 
pounds are: 

*a-ni- with verbs of dying and disintegration probably has si-harm 

conjugations; it becomes Orii- with an expressed object or passive 

sub j ect 
'aUM-ni-(nd-) "divide into, divide amongst' 1 (YM 6) 
''d-xo-di- "pretend to . . . " 
rfa^-rfi-yt-progressive-continuative "hold up" 
dah-forih-di-st&rt from cess, with stems of going, running, and the like, 

"start forward;" with type (T) stems, "start to move holding . . ., 

carrying . . . , start to move forward with ..." 
dak-yi-cesa&tive refers to sky phenomena as "flash of lightning, cloud 

appearance' ' 
daxi-di-, or dahi-di- "hang head downward, be suspended in unusual 

or unnatural position" 
di-di- or dzi-di- "move . , . toward fire, relate to fire" 
na-down-g/i-momentary "drop, fall" 

wa-down-'o-beyond-di-cessative "take down from, off ..." 
na-xo- "pertaining to earth, earthly, generally supernatural'* 
nd-di-, n-di-ce&a&tive with type stems, "pick up... from ground, 

detach . . . , separate surfaces of . . . ;" with stem of bodily motion, 

"get up, rise, move from supine position, show life" 
nd-di~xi- (fut. ndxidi-di-) "move out of place, move up out of position; 

turn over" 
ni-ki- t or ni-xi- (perhaps from nV "earth"-H-touch) "edge, referring to 

ni-ki-di- t or ni-xi-di- "start for home;" with verbs of bodily motion 

(especially "go"), "start (learning) to walk, crawl." Words with 

these prefixes seem to refer to motion or action close to the ground. 
ni-xi-ni-( ?) with verbs of motion "change position;" with verbs of 

sitting and lying, "ambush, waylay, lie in ambush" 

xuJ NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10,29.-10.35. 

##-(< ,#i-security-nd-against)di- "greet as a relative" 
#a-out-nd-back-(nd-) "take out of pawn; take . . , -back-out" 
#d-(< #a-out-nd-up)di- "move ... up out" 

10.30. Locative and temporal adverbs which precede the verb 
may be '■ o closely affiliated with it as to enter into its conjugation 
as a subject, ho- so far (10.112-10. 112a.) is an example; its phonetic 
character changes markedly in the various persons and aspects. 
Other examples are: 'dko-te "thus it is;" yind'jtcid "he embraced 
her" (YM 35); xatsidzi* "he stood behind him(4)" (NT 186: 12). 

10.31. Locatives in the form of postpositions may be a part of the 
verb complex. If the verb has an identity independent of the post- 
positional complex, they are written separately. If the postposition 
with or without its object is so thoroughly a part of the verb com- 
plex that the meaning of the verb includes the meaning of the post- 
position and would make no sense without it, the postpositional 
complex and verb are written as a single word : 

bitdq,- 'i-yd I have been interceding for him; I-have-been-moving- 

btiid nddjilyod he(4) ran back away from her (cp. 'akdlzis "he is putting 

on his belt") 
yiyaido-td-l it will be taken from him by force; from-him-forcefully- 

round-obj.-will-be-moved (YM 47) 
'aydVfrl filtered liquid; something-has-been-caused-to-float-through 

10.32. In cases of this type there may be two objects, one of the 
verb, one of the postposition (prefix). The most outstanding ex- 
ample is Oi-(< 0-7&d-against) in which the postposition is contracted 
with its object, and both may enter into the conjugation as in 

10.33. A noun may be the subject of a verb as a part of the verb 
complex : 

tj-tscd ice cream; ice-pounded 

'aze'bi-j alkaseltzer; medicine-boiling 

xdj0-le4 there may be benefit 

J dhi-ldoh fog moves; fog-pauses-moving 

yisda^q I have saved it; safety-there-is-round-obj. 

le--djin coal; soil -blackened 

10.34. A contraction of noun and postposition may serve as a 
verbal prefix : 

dibi ta-yiriil (ta-~ < 2o-water-i- into) sheep have been dipped; sheep 

kfy-tivl (< kin-i-) Keetseel; house-fragments 

10,35-10.64. Principles of Conjugation 

10.35. Conjugation is primarily a phonetic matter, the sounds anu 
processes being concerned with only a few of the sounds described 
for the language as a whole, sounds modified by lengthening, tone 

10.35.-10,39. prefixes 163 

nasalization, and the relative position of the prefixes. Although for 
lexical purposes eighty-eight vowels and vowel clusters are listed in 
the alphabet, only three — a, i, and o — are primary in the prefix 
conjugations. All variations of these sounds, as well as e and its 
variations, and all vowel clusters are due to contraction, often of 
vowel and consonant. A study of the prefixes isolated shows that 
they are primarily of the forms Ca, Ci, or Co, any other forms being 
compounds. Even a form Ci- or Ci'- may be a compound, as for* 
example, yi- < yi-3 obj.-yi-continuative, or *v- < Vbeyond-yi- 

10.36. Another phonetic-morphological problem is the change of 
forms like Ca to Ci : 7&a-about changes to ni- in certain surroundings, 
for example, nijd<yga*l "he(4) will make a trip/' or niseyd "I have 
made a trip." m-about changes to n- before di~ as in ndo r ga m l "he 
will go about." Such changes are perhaps mechanical, but there is 
also a prefix m-end, which changes to n- in similar circumstances, as 
ndo'gd'l "he will go to the end," nijdo-g&l "he(4) will go to the 
end" (YM 66, 68). The differences may be determined from the 
stems and meaning, but often cannot be ascertained from a single 
form without context. Compare also: na-ne*$^*' "it galloped about," 
ni-ndniltf "it cust. gallops about" (YM 209), and ni~ndndltli' "he is 
cust. halted, hindered, stopped" (YM 215) (cp. 8.27.). 

10.37. Prefixes of the form nd- have several meanings, and some 
of the persons indicate they are distinct. One means "back, in 
circle, cycle, or arc; customary;" another means "against" — both 
require {-nd-), an inflectional prefix. They may be compounded 
with each other: nd-'dlna-d (cont.) "he is doing better than ex- 
pected" (YM 151); ni-nd'dlna 9 "he cust. does better than expected;" 
td-nd-sgis (cont.) "I am washing it," td-ni-nd-sgis "I cust. wash it" 
(YM 87). 

10.38. Such forms oblige one to determine whether the vowel is a 
or i f d or i. Usually it may be determined by meaning or other 
phases of the complex, but it is obviously so unstable that any 
decision is arbitrary. That the Navaho interpreters usually know 
which vowel the full form has without any hesitation is an indication 
that the meaning is determining. 

10.39. Of the thirty-seven consonantal forms listed for the 
alphabet only half are concerned in the primary conjugations, and 
this number (18) includes some like t\ kw, and y, which may result 
from contraction. Just as n with an accompanying vowel may dis- 
appear, become vocalic, or show its effect by a high tone, so other 
consonants may be lost by contraction, by change into a different 
consonantal form or even into a vowel. Examples are si-, which may 

12 Keichard 

164 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.39.-10.42. 

become ~z- when preceded by certain prefixes, si-harm, un-..., 
undergoes many changes; it becomes H- in the progressive; behaves 
like -t/i-repetitive aspect in the future, seems lost in the 3-3 form of 
the continuative, yiyv-, and becomes se*s- in the 1 by 3 form of 
si-perfective. The same si- becomes -j- in djij- the 4 form of si-per- 
fective, is discernible only as a lengthened vowel of yi-perfective 
(yi'- instead of yi-), changes to o* when followed by (nd-) y and is one 
of the elements of the combination with si-(wd-)perfective, 3-3 yo 4 z-. 
These are only a few of the changes undergone by si-harm, many of 
which so overlap the forms of other prefixes in combination that si- 
harm has not been previously isolated in Navaho. 1 

10.40. dzi-away and dtyi-emotion, attitude have hitherto been so 
confused as to seem the same, or irregular, yet the changes brought 
about by their combination with other prefixes indicate their 
distinctions, even if their meanings did not. As the paradigms show, 
the sibilants of these two prefixes undergo various changes, partic- 
ularly because of other sibilants in the conjugations, not to speak 
of the influence of other sibilants in the stems with which the 
prefixes are used. Such changes are marked in the fourth person 
forms when dzi-away conflicts with dji-4 subject or agent, dzi-away 
seems to be lost in 4 cust., 'aneidjigoh "he(4) cust. plunges, takes a 
plunge;" actually dzi-away survives in -i-, dz- and dj- having 
apparently coalesced. In the ^-perfective intransitive the fourth 
person is dzidji'-, as is to be expected, but yi-perfective 3-3 is yidji'-, 
showing a process analogous to that of 'aneidyi-customary, and 
i/i-perfective 3 by 3 is dzo*- < dzi-away-t/i-3 pass, subj.-yi-pf.-m'- 
compl.-yi-3 ag. This is a very complicated example but corresponds 
with the pattern of other forms. 

10.41. dji-emotion combines with si-harm and thus brings about 
a conflict between dj-, s-, -c- (1 subj. or ag.), and dj- of the fourth 
person pronoun, a conflict interestingly illustrated by the paradigms 
of dji- (10.121-10.121d.). 

10.42. Paradigms of oca-up out, ^-repetitive action, and are-place 
show kindred problems. The following examples illustrate char- 
acteristic combinations : 

xi-repetitive action cont. : 
1 xec- 
1-3 xe-c- 
a?i-repetifcive action si-pf.: 
3 xe-- 
3-3 xe*z- 
i by 3 'aye-z- 

ai-repetitive action-(na-)-si-pf. : 
1 xd- 
3 xa-z- 
1 Li 1930a, p. 66 

^" r epetitiveaction-st-(™*-) "harm" cont.: 

a;o "l)lace cont. : 

3 xa- 
xo '^d-) "place" cont.: 

3 xd- 
^"^-place harm cont. : 

4 xodjo-- 

10.43. The examples do not indicate whether a form CV is a 
syllable composed of consonant-vowel, whether a vowel is distinct 
from a consonant or the reverse, and the peculiarities and multi- 
plicity of forms may seem chaotic (cp. 3.136-3.140.). The rules of 
absorption, assimilation, contraction, and saturation worked out 
from the paradigms show, however, that Navaho is exceedingly 
regular, very few forms being non-conforming. It has therefore been 
deemed best to present paradigms as fully as possible, even though 
there may seem to be undue repetition. 

10.44. Another reason for the apparent irregularity is that the 
phonetic processes are often general, not restricted to morphological 
categories (3.56-3.75.). For instance, -d- plus a glottal stop and 
vowel (-d-'V) becomes -fV as a first person dual: 

yvtac we two go prog. 

yi'tic we two touch it with foot 

yi-tol we two float it 

10.45. The same result is evident when -d-agent precedes 'V in the 
-d-agentive form of the stem, as the 'V and -Gentries in the diction- 
ary demonstrate. 

In reverse, 'V-'V-CV becomes -'CV: 

3-i fut. 'a'to-- (< 'o-beyond-'o-i-di-fut.-t/i-prog.) he will . . . something 

(3) by i fut. 6tYo*- (< N-[3]subj.-'a-i ag.-di-fut.-^t-prog.) it will be 
. . . ed by someone 

10.46. There seem to be three Mi- prefixes, one meaning "over, 
above;" another, "security;" and a third, "sever." One might think 
that these can be differentiated by the way they enter into com- 
bination with other prefixes in their vicinity. This is true only to a 
limited degree, for they often combine in the same way; for instance, 
He- < K-over-(na-) against; He- < Aft-security-(Twi-) against; H6- 
< JH-sever-(wa-) against. From these and other examples it must be 
concluded that contractions with change of tone and vowel are 
general and mechanical rather than distinctive for particular 

10.47. Glide Prefixes 

10.47. We have noted that suffixes have glide consonants (3.39.); 
they are probably a result of historical processes. Similarly, a few 
glide elements or prefixes seem to have merely a combining function. 


166 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.47 .-10. 5Q # 

Vindefinite agent may occur if it prec§d§§ & pr§£ix ? §li5h §§ 4i~ 9r 
ni- with which it may combine. Usually, however, the form is 
'adi-, and even though 'a- is separated from -di-, its glide prefix, the 
latter enters into the conjugation, behaving like di-start from. The 
two elements of 'd-di -reflexive are treated similarly in similar 
circumstances. Since 'adi-self is usually a passive, the resemblance 
to 'a-di-indefinite agent is reasonable, although the two do not enter 
into comparable combinations. 

10.48. Retroactive Influence, 

10.48. Contractions may have a retroactive effect on the preceding 
vowel or vowels. If the continuative paradigm of 'a-' a- "someone 
is . . . beyond, ... is . . .ing some object beyond" (10.76b.) is 
compared with that of the continuative 'a-indefinite pronoun 
(10.103.), it may be seen that 'a- of the former paradigm appears 
only in the fourth person : 

1-i Vec- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i Vi- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) . 

3-i Vt- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.) 

4-i *aH6i- ('a-beyond; Vi obj.; dji-4 subj.; yt-cont.) 

Dl-i H'i-d- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -i-d-T>l subj.) 

D2-i Vo/t- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -oh D2 subj.) 

The first vowel of each form has changed under the influence of 
the following vowel which has contracted with the conjugated 

10.49-10.54. Contraction 

10.49. Absorption and saturation have been explained and illus- 
trated ; the paradigms will further validate the concepts. All prefixes 
should doubtless be classified according to their dominance in 
relation to all others. Such a classification may indicate which 
prefixes are already compounds, for instance, di-start from and m- 
start for, though they have the simplest prefix form Ci-, are almost 
certainly compounds, probably di-start from-t/i-continuative and 
?w-start for-^i-continuative. The conclusion reached from this work 
so far indicates that compound prefixes, now seemingly simple, are 
generally dominant — compare, for instance, the first person dual 
pronoun -i'd- with other persons in each paradigm. 

10.50. When this work was started an attempt was made t<> 
present "simple" as compared with "combined" or "compounded 
prefixes, but it proved a futile task, as the paradigms show. Pro 
nouns of the same rank do not all have the same position; mot< 
prefixes change by contraction, the result depending upon the otlu 
prefixes in their vicinity; and some prefixes consist of two element 

10.50.-10.63. prefixes 167 

(syllables) which do not always remain in juxtaposition. For ex- 
ample, the simplest forms of TWi-back cannot be accounted for by 
nd- alone, but the necessary forms include (-nd-), which has been 
called an ' 'inflectional" prefix (10.25.). (-nd-) of the combination 
nd-(nd-) "back" sometimes has the same forms as nd-(nd-) "against" 
(possibly[tt£-/w-]), yet its appearance in different settings shows 
different treatment, sometimes accounted for by the meaning. Still 
other combinations are those with -n^-completive. I have concluded 
that m-perfective is really equivalent to ni-ni-, yi-perfective to 
yi-ni-, and si-perfective to si-ni-. These double prefixes are the 
most difficult, probably because they contain so many n's, which 
notably influence the tone and the length of the resulting vowel. 
The analysis of -yi-cessative and -^t-repetitive aspect is more satis- 
factory, since these prefixes have forms that indicate a more inde- 
pendent existence, for example, future cessative and future repet- 
itive. I am not sure, however, that yf-cessative perfective contains 
-m-completive — I think it does. 

10.51. We have seen that, though di- of J a-di-indefinite agent and 
'd-di-seli is merely a glide prefix (10.47. ), nevertheless it must be 
reckoned with independently because when it gets separated from 
'a-indefinite agent, or 'a-self , -di- is the conjugated prefix. Similarly 
too the components of nd-(nd~) "back" and nd-(nd-) "against" may 
be separated, but no part is lost, and if a prefix comes between the 
components, (-nd-) is conjugated, each component having its partic- 
ular effect on the prefixes near it ; the same is true of the perfective 

10.52. Morphology shows that the inflective (-nd-) "back" is 
different from the inflective (-nd-) "against" in several ways, (-nd-) 
"back" affects only the singular and dual forms of the continuatives 
and perfectives, whereas (-nd-) "against" may enter into the future 
and almost any of the tenses or aspects, and is significant in the 
plural system, as well as in the singular-dual. Furthermore, (-nd-) 
"back" shows its dominance most frequently in the third person 
singular, whereas in this and in other forms (-nd-) "against" often 
results in -ni- from combination with other prefixes. 

10*53. The principle of double prefixes, each component of which 
must be dealt with separately, is further corroborated by the 
saturated forms of the future such as diyo-- < di-fut.-yi-rep. asp.- 
^i-prog. "he will . . . repeatedly," and diyo-- < di-fut.-st-harm-^i- 
prog. "he will undo . . . ;" by dtm-prolongative which become dirii- 
with the indefinite pronoun, whereas the future has the form 'ado*-; 
by the curious conjugations of yini-reciprocal effect, (-ni-) of which 
enters into the future to result in a form yidd'- < ^'-rec.ef,-di-fut,- 

168 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.^4.-10.57. 

10.54. In presenting the prefix paradigms an attempt has been 
made to include as many of the conjugational changes as seem 
significant, isolating as frequently as possible the simple prefixes. 
In some cases, however, two prefixes enter so intimately into the 
conjugations that both must be represented. 

10.55-10.58. Position of Prefixes 

10.55. It has been demonstrated that the position of a prefix is as 
important as its phonetic composition, for it determines the result 
of contraction. The reason -m'-completive is assigned to final place 
in the intransitive and active transitive is that the type of second 
person dual of all perfectives is -o*-, not -o*A-, whereas in the passive 
it is -o*h-. From these forms I conclude that the dual pronoun -oh- 
must have a position in the transitive active voice different from 
that in the passive. Followed through as consistently as possible this 
procedure led to the derivation of the first person singular form as 
perfective-subject-completive, which differentiates it from the 
passive with perfective-completive-agent. In other words, -c- sub- 
ject can be absorbed between the perfective and -m-completive, 
but although si-ni- may become si-, si-ni-c- becomes sic- > sis-, that 
is, the pronominal agent -c-by me survives in the passive. Nearly all 
perfective forms are accounted for by this analysis, which seems to 
me, therefore, far more satisfactory and consistent with other prin- 
ciples of the language than the assumption that there is a set of 
pronouns for the perfective different from that of the other aspects. 2 

10.56. The same prefixes do not always contract with each other 
throughout the paradigms, but depend upon those surrounding 
them. In their more complicated combinations the prefixes may be 
compared with an algebraic expression of quantities within a 

10.57. The following formulas illustrate various combinations of 
prefixes and the way they contract : 

cont. 3-3 yi-3 obj.-yi-cont. > j/^- (absorption) 

cont. 2 yi-cont.-n-2 subj. > n- or ni- (absorption with ni-dominant) 

cont. P3 da-pl.-yi-eont. > dai- or del- (da- dominant with vowel 


inc. 3 yi-cont-m-start for > yi- (yi- dominant, ni- > high tone) 

inc. 3-3 yi-% obj.-^-cont.-m-start for > yi- (yi- absorbed, yi- domi- 

nant, ni- > high tone) 

inc. P3 da-pl.-^-cont.-m-start for > dayi- or dai- (da-prefixed to 

singular, or contracted to vowel cluster with rising tone) 

2/i-pf. 3 ^-prog.-tti-compl. > yi- (yi- dominant) 

yi-pf. 3-3 yi-S obj.-^-prog.-ni-compl. > yiyi-- saturation; yi-3 obj. 

retains its identity, yi-prog. dominates) 

3 Hoijer 1945a, pp. 198-9 

10.57.-\o.58. prefixes 169 

?A-P f - 3 by 3 yi-3 pass.subj.-#vprog.-m-compl.-2^-3 ag. > yc- (so many 
g/o.pT'isifi^oQ -that. vowqI ifi changed) 

inc.cess. 2 (yi-cont.-yi-cess)-n-2 subj. > yi--n- > yi'- (yi-ceaa. domi- 

nates yi-cont. and absorbs n-2 subj.) 

pf. cess. 2 g/t-prog.-(yi-cess.-n-2 subj.) > t/im- 

10.58. If the combination of the last example were (yi-yi-)-n- we 
should have yi'ni-. That this reasoning is correct is attested by 
'rm-beyond in the second person perfective cessative which may be 
represented [('a-beyond-^i-prog.-2/i-cess.)-w-2 subj.], or [('a-yr-)ni-] 
> 'rm-. So regular is this contraction that -ni- of the second person 
perfective cessative is the test form for the cessative, distinguishing 
it from the repetitive aspective forms, particularly of the continua- 
tive in which all other forms may be the same. If, however, a form 
equivalent to yini- (the low tone of -ni- is indicative) is found in the 
second person perfective, the corresponding continuative is cessative 
and not repetitive. 

cont. 3 m-end-yvcont. > ni-- 10.100. 
cont, 2 (m-end-yt-cont.)-n-2 subj.> wt--m- > ni-- 10.100. 
cont. 3-3 ni~end-{yi-3 obj.-2/t-cont.)> ni-yi-~> ni*- 10.100. 
inc. 3 ni-end-m-start for> ni-- 10.99. 

inc. 3-3 ni-end-(yi-3 obj.-m'-start for) > ni-yi- 9 or ni- 10.99. 
m'-pf. 1 m*-end-(ni-start for-c-1 subj.-ni-compl.) > ni-ni-> ni-- 10.99a. 
m-pf. 2 ni-end-(nt-start for-n-2 subj.-ni-compl.) > ni-yini- > nini-ni- or 
ni'ni- (here m-end dominates yi- as initial, but yi- raises the 
tone of m-end when contracted. The reason for yini- in the 
second person of m-pf. is not clear) (10.99a.) 
ni-pf.3-3 yi-3 obj. -m-end- (ni-start for-ni-compl.) > yinini-- or yi-3 obj.- 
(m-end-m-start for-ni-compl.) > yini-- (cp. 10.100b. which 
shows uncertainty about the position of m-end; usually it- pre- 
cedes the object, but here may occupy the position after yi-Z obj. 
as well) (10.99a.) 
si-pf. 1 si-pf.-c-l subj.-ni-compl. > ai- 

«i-pf. 2 (si-pf.-n-2 subj. )-ni-compl. > aini- 

ai-pf. 3 st-pf.-ni-compl. > ai- 

st-pf. 4 dji-4 subj.-(svpf.-ni-compl.)> dji-ai-> dzi- 

si-pf. 3-3 2/^-3 obj. -(^-pf.-ni-compl.)> yi-ai-^> yiz- 

ai-harm-ai-pf. 1 (svharm-^-pf.-c-l subj.)-ni-compl. > ai-ni- > ai- 

si-h&rm-ai-pf. 2 (s^-haxm-^-pf.-n-2 subj.)-ni-compl. > aini- 

si-harm-si-pf. 3 si-harm-(*i-pf.-ni-compl.)> ai-ai-^> aiz- 

si-harm-si-pf. 3 by 3 (yi-3 pass. subj.-st-harm)-(5t-pf.-m-compl.)-3/i-ag. 
> yi-ai-yi- > yo'8- (yi-3 subj. and yi- ag. change 
•i- to -o-, and o changes y to y) 

a- > y- is exemplified by the following: 

'a-beyond-yi-rep.asp.-si-pf. 1-i 'a -beyond -'o-i obj.-st-pf.-j/t-rep.asp.-c-l 

subj.-ni-compl. > -'a-'a-t/^-> HHy6- 
'advself-si-harm-si-pf. s by 1 'drft-self-s^-harm-(st-pf.-ni-compl.-c-l ag.) 

> 'adi-(si-aic) > i adiy£c- 
-yi-rep.asp.-st-pf. 1 (*i-pf.-2/t-rep.asp.)-c-l subj.-ni- > yi-c-ni- 

> -y4- 

170 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 10.59.-\0.61. 

10.59-10.64. Voicing 

10.59. The analysis of si -perfective third person transitive Active 
voice, yiz~, exemplifies a further effect of contraction, voicing. In a 
sense it is analogous to the vowel change represented by yi-per- 
fective 3 by 3 in which yi-3 pass. subj.-(2/i-prog. -m-compl.)-«/z-3 
a g- > yi-yi-yi- > yo'-. Voicing usually occurs when several prefixes 
of apparently similar or near-similar values are juxtaposed. It can- 
not be proved to be due to any particular prefix or type of prefix, as 
the examples show, but seems to be an effect of phonetic composi- 
tion and relative position: si-pf. 3-3 yi-3 obj.-(5i-pf.-m'-compl.) 
> yi-si- > yiz- ; this form occurs only with the zero form of the stem. 
Probably yis-3-3 prefix of a stem complex with -2-classifier is to be 
explained as yiz-l- > yis- y that is, -I- unvoices -z-. However, yis- of 
the passive forms, that is, with classifiers -d~ and -1-, is explained on 
other bases — si-perfective does not become voiced with the prefix 
yi-S passive subject (cp. 10.117.). 

10.60. The following examples have -z- with prefixes other than 
yi-% object: 

ai-ipf. 3 (\z-beyond-dki-away)-($i-pf.-yz-rep.asp.-n{-compl.) > 

y a-dzi-8i--^> y adzi-z- "he has . . .ed beyond rep." 
'd-(nd-)si-pf. P3 'd-thus-<ta-pl.-(*i-pf.-n£-compl.) > 'd-da-si- > *dda-z~ 

"they have . . . thus 1 ' 
da-down-si-pf, 3 da-down-(si-pf.-m-compl. > da*z- "they have . . .ed 

rfa-down-si-pf. 3-3 da-down-yi-3 obj.-(«£-pf.-n£-compl.) > da-(yi-ai-) > 

da-yiz- > dai-z~ "he has . . .ed it down" 
dt-start from-*i-pf. 3-3 rft-startfrom-^-3 obj.-(.s£-pf.-n£-compI.) 

> di-{yisi-) > di-yiz- > de-z- "he 
started to ... it" 

dt-start from-^-pf.-2/i-rep.asp. 3-3 yi~3 obj.-cfo'-start from-($t-pf.-i/t-rep. 

asp.-ni-compl.)> yi-(di-si-)> yidi-z- 
"he started rep. to . . .it" 

10.61. The initial of a^-change position and xi-repetitive action is 
voiced under certain conditions : 

m-end-a; for inc. 3-3 ni-end-(yi-^ for 

> ni-yi-- (with verbs of severing) 3-3 -yi-Z obj.-$i-pf.- ni~ 

compl. > ni-xi-yiz- (with verbs of 

loading; carrying-rep. -to-end) 
'd-thus-a^ 3-3 '^-3 obj.-yt-prog.-m- 

compl. > 'd-xi-yiyi-- > *dyi-- 
Oi-h a^-change pos.-m-pf. 3-3 Ov h into O (^-change pos.-yi-3 obj.-ni- 

pf.-ni-compl.) > Oi-h xiyi-* "he has 

. . . into ..." 
Oi-h ^-change pos.-ni-pf. 3 pass. Oi-h into O at-change pos.-yt-3 pass. 

subj.-ni-pf. > Oi-h yi- "it was put 

into ...(WE) 
Oi-h xi-change pos.-st-pf. 3-3 Oi-h into O ^-change pos.-(yt-3 obj.- 

si-pf. -ni -compl. ) > Oi- xiyvz- 

10.62.-10.66. prefixes 171 

10.62. Other prefixes may combine so as to voice a prefix initial : 

'a-beyond-si-harm-d-opt. 2 'a-beyond-^t-harm-o-opt.-n^ subi.)> 

y ay6*- (with -zq,-* "beat wife") 

A^-courtesy-a?i-yini-rec.ef. 3 by 1 Mi-courtesy -(xi-yi-3 pass. subj. -yini- 

rec. ef.-c-l ag.> My6c- (YM 153) 

10.63. It will be noted that the prefixes whose initials become 
voiced in some forms are usually combinations of yi-3 object, yi-3 
passive subject, ^-repetitive action, ori-change position, ^-per- 
fective, and si-harm, and that n is often involved in the contraction. 
The Navaho do not by any means agree about these forms. This all 
seems to be evidence that such combinations are extremely un- 
stable: they are of great importance in speech diversity (13-13.54.). 

10.64. The tendency to voice noun initials in the possessive forms 
(5.9.) may be related to the rule of voicing s as it is pushed toward 
the stem complex by surrounding prefixes. Compare xai "winter" 
and diyai- (< dv xai) "this winter." Presumably dv "this" is a 
word, but with the form -yav no explanation would fit except that 
dv is considered a prefix, then voicing of the initial and lengthening 
of the vowel is comparable to the forms of 10.60-10.61. 

10.65-10.73. Arrangement of Paradigms 

10*65. The prefix paradigms are arranged alphabetically with as 
much consistency as possible. Since the position of the prefixes is 
variable, consistency in the sense of the Indo-European grammar is 
impossible. Explanations are included to show where such inconsist- 
ency, usually due to prefix compounding, occurs. The prefix or 
prefix combination is placed at the head of the paradigm with 
meanings generalized as much as possible. At the left the personal 
pronominal relationships (3 "he. . . ," 3-3 "he . . . it") are indicated. 
Each prefix form is followed by the analysis of the combination. 

10.66. Some prefixes are "free," that is, they may be used with 
almost any verb. When they are, no stems, or at best very few, are 
given by way of illustration. For example, the progressive and future 
1 of verbs of motion (active verbs) are generalized forms; their pre- 
fixes may be attached to the progressive-future stem as listed in the 
principal parts, and are usually not listed under the paradigm. 
Compounded prefixes may, however, be illustrated to show the 
relative position of the separate prefixes, especially when they 
produce idiomatic expressions. In the simplest forms, any one of the 
personal prefixes is prefixed to the stem. If, for example, 'a-beyond 
is the prefix and there are no others, . . . -bqs (inc.) (-bqs) is listed for 
the "continuative," three dots mean that any one of the personal 
prefixes is to be inserted, -bqs (inc.) means that the "continuative" 
stem is "inceptive," and (-bqs) following it, is the progressive form 

172 STAVAHO GBAMMAR l(t.66.-4&69. 

to be listed in the lexicon — the means of finding the verb. Classifiers 
are given with the stem, for example, (-l-bqrs) (inc.) (-l-bqs). Theo- 
retically any classifier may be used with any stem; actually a 
classifier may modify the meaning. No forms have been listed which 
have not been found in grammatical tests or in context, therefore 
the classifier is indicated. -Z-causative, for instance, explains why a 
double object, 3-3-3 "he causes him to . . . it" may occur; -Z-passive 
causative explains why only the passive forms can be used for the 
particular stem. 

10.67. indicates a "possessive" or an "objective" prefix when 
the idiom requires a postpositional form or a thematic object. It 
should be noted that the object of the stem complex may be 
preceded by other prefixes. 

10.68. Unfortunately the prefixes with vowel initial start the 
prefix list, "unfortunately" because they have an initial or nearly 
initial position in the complex, and they are among the most 
difficult in the language, including as they do, the most complicated 
of the phonetic changes. The suggestion is once more emphasized 
that the beginner should master the prefixes ^{-progressive, di~ 
future, di-start from, m-start for, yi-continuative (present), and 
wi-perfective, i/i-perfective, and st-perfective before examining the 
more complicated combinations. He will thus get a feeling for the 
position and behavior of the elementary prefixes — the personal 
pronominal subjects and the aspects. Later, he may learn to com- 
pound prefixes by working backward from the stem or stem 

10.69. The primary aim of the arrangement here given is to enable 
the student to find the word he encounters in speech and in reading. 
If , for example, he hears ya r di'fo-'d-l or ya- di'do-'d'l he should be 
able to start with the stem ~wl which he will find under that form 
since it is progressive; do-- together with the stem will suggest the 
future prefix di- (10.87.). In the paradigm for di- he will find that the 
indefinite subject is 'ado--, and if he remembers the rule of con- 
traction he will know that di-ad- > di'di- or di'fi- (3.41-3.42.). He is 
also expected to know that -a* is a postposition meaning "to, to- 
ward, or for" (7.18.) and that y- stands for yi-his indicated in the 
lists as Oa\ The form he is seeking will be indicated under the 
paradigm of 9 a-i (for indefinite obj.) future as Oa- di- (< 'a-theme) 
. . . -'d'l "permit." This means that the compound of the regular 

future has an additional pre-paradigmatic prefix di-, and one would 
expect to find the continuative as Oa- dVa-. . .-'d'h. This example, 
though difficult, is chosen for explanation because it illustrates 
several typical points. 

10.70.-} o.74. prefixes 173 

10.70. In Navaho, as in all languages, the speaker does not limit 
his speech to the forms known by the novice, and forms of this type 
will constantly be encountered. Consequently compounded prefix 
forms are sometimes listed under the paradigms. They are gener- 
alized, rather then specific forms — the beginner should, of course, 
master many full forms in the form of exercises that cannot be 
given here. 

10.71. Each prefix paradigm is given in the aspects in which its 
forms have been found, thus permitting the relationship of the verbs 
to be indicated. For example, if particular stems make an idiom, they 
will be found in the future, continuative, and perfective. If the 
continuative is the present, the perfective may be either yi- or si-. 
If the continuative is the inceptive, it will probably have a m-per- 
fective. This arrangement indicates the ''system" — progressive- 
continuative, inceptive, cessative, or repetitive. 

10.72. -T with the stem to be selected in parentheses, for example, 
-T (fut.) means that any one of the "type" stems may be used, if its 
meaning permits. The "type" stems are those without which no one 
can master Navaho; the most elementary of these are listed in 

10.73. / stands for "independent pronoun" of the type found in 
6.13. ; sometimes an independent pronoun is thematic, for example, 
/ 'a-theme-z/i-pf . . . .-tcq*' (-tcfrl) "... is left out of distribution, . . . 
is inadequate." Here the third person form is stable, the independent 
pronoun indicates whether it is the first, second or another person: 
ci H'tcq,'* "I have been left out when a distribution was made; I am 
inadequate," or better, "it was inadequate for me" (10.80b.). 

10.74. List of Prefix Paradigms 

10.74. In the following list of prefix paradigms the third person 
and other significant forms are given in parentheses as a matter of 
convenience, since they are most likely to be divergent or test forms : 

'a-indefinite pronoun, theme 10.75. 
'a-beyond prog. Co--) 10.76. 

fut. ('ado--) 10.76a. 
cont. ('»•-) 10.76b. 
yi-pf. ('*•-, 3-3 y ayi-) 10.76c. 
opt. (*ayo--) 10.76d. 
fut. cess. (H-do*-) 10.76e. 
inc. cess, ('*-) 10.76f. 
pf. cess. ('*-) 10.76g. 
'a-y^-beyond rep.asp. cont. {'i--, 3-3 'iyi-) 10.76h. 

ai-pf. Cayi-z-, 3-i Via-) 10.76i. 
'a-xi-heyond cont. ('axi-, 3-3 iyiyi--) 10.76J. 
yi-pf. {'ayi-; 3-3 't-i/i--) 10.76k. 
ai-pf. {'axe--, 3-3 'axe-z-) 10.761. 

174 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 10.74. 

'a-xi-yi-beyond rep.asp. fut. (Hdiyo-, 3-3 *i-diyo*-) 10.76m. 

cont. ('iyi- t 3-3 'iyiyi*-) 10.76n. 
'a-ai-beyond un-. . . fut. (H-do-) 10.76o. 
cont. (V-) 10.76p. 
ai-pf. (W) 10.76q 
'a-ai-ni-heyond un- . . . cont. (V-) 10.76r. 
'a-8i-yi~heyond un-. . .rep.asp. cont. (H-, 2 *ayi-) 10.76s. 
'a-dzi-beyond away cont. ('adzi-) 10.76t. 

2/t-pf. (*adziyi~) 10.76u. 
*a~dzi-yi-beyond away rep.asp. cont. ('adzi-) 10.76v. 

st-pf. fodzvz-) 10.76w. 
'ati-ni-(na-)suffeT cont. ('atl-) 10.77. 

m-pf. (by 3 'aid--) 10.77a. 
*d-(nd-)static ('d-, 1 *anc-) 10.78. 
'd-(nd-)thus relatively stat. cont. ('dw-, 1 'dwc-) 10.79. 
'd-thusprog. ('d-, 3-3 'dyo-) 10.80. 

fut. ('ado--) 10.80a. 
'd-(nd-)thus cont. fd-, 1 y dc~) 10.80b. 

yi-pL fd-, 3-3 'dt/i-, '{-) 10.80c. 
st-pf. {'andz-) 10.80d. 
inc. cess, (*dyi-) 10.80e. 
opt. C6-) 10.80f. 
'd-'a-thus beyond inc.cess. (Tf-) 10.80g. 
pf. cess. (V*-) 10.80h. 
'd-yini-thus rec.ef. cont. ('dyo'-) 10.80i. 
'd-, 'ddt-reflexive 10.81. 
*adi-yini-ae\f rec.ef. cont. (*ddd-) 10.81a. 
'ddt-#t-8elf harm cont. ('drfv-) 10.81b. 
at-pf. ( J ddt*5-) 10.81c. 
-d-optative 10.82-10.82b. 

-o-type form (V-) 10.82c. 
-d-type form (-d-) 10.82d. 
6i-(nd-)against it, see Ond~ 10.83. 
da-plural prog. (dei-> 3-3 dayo-) 10.84. 

cont. (<ia*-, 3-3 dat-, dei-) 10.84a. 
da-down cont. (do*-, 3-3 dei- t dayi-) 10.85. 
2/t-pf. (dd-, 3-3 dayi-) 10.85a. 
svpf. (do-a;-, 3-3 dai-z-) 10.85b. 
da-misfortune 10.86. 
dt-future (do-, 3-3 yido-) 10.87. 
di-emit, start from 10.88. 

cont. (di-, 3-3 yidi-) 10.88a. 
yi-pf. (di- f 3-3 $Kd£-) 10.88b. 
*t-pf. (de--, de*z-) 10.88c. 
inc.cess. (dt--, 3-3 yidi-) 10.88d. 
pf. cess, (df-, 3-3 yidi--) 10.88e. 
di-yi-at&rt from rep.asp. cont. (di- y 3-3 yidi--) 10.88f. 

si-pf. (dfs-, 3-3 yidi-z-) 10.88g. 
dtm-get stuck static (dt-, 1 dinic-) 10.89. 

dt-ni-get stuck moving uniformly cont. (dini-, 3-3 yidini-) 10.89a. 

yt-pf. (dini- t 3-3 yidini-) 10.89b. 
di-m-get stuck starting for inc. {de- t 3-3 yide-) 10.89c. 

ni-pf. (dini-, 3-3 yidini-) 10.89d. 
di-ro'-get stuck #i-pf. (by 3 yidine-s-) 10.89e. 
di-ni-get stuck cont. cess. 10.89f. 

inc.cess. (dini- t 3-3 yidini-) 10.89g. 
pf.cess. {dini-, 2 dinini- 9 3-3 yidini-) 10.89h. 

1U.7£ PREFIXES 175 

di-ni-ni- be stuck at end m-pf. (by 3 dine-, 3 by 3 yidine--) 10.89L 
disi-staxt un-. . . prog, (diyo--) 10.89J. 

cont. {di>- 9 3-3 yidv-) 10.89k. 
si-pf. (diye-s-) 10.891. 
-disi-emit un-. . . cont. (diye--) 10.89m. 
si-pf. (diyi-) I0.89n. 
dl-start against fut. (-do--) 10.90, 

cont. (di-, 3-3 yidi-) 10.90a. 
m-pf. (<&-, 3-3 yid^-) 10.90b. 
si-pL (de-z-) 10.90c. 
di-ni-prolongative prog, and fut. (dind--, 3-3 yidino--) 10.91. 
cont. (dini-, 3-3 ywMni-) 10.91a. 
ai-pf. (dinl--, 3-3 din^-2-) 10.91b. 
inc.cess. (dini--) 10.91c. 
pf.cess. (dini--, 2 dinini-) 10.91d. 
dl-*i-ni-pTo\. un- . . . cont. (de-z-, 3-3 yidi-z-) 10.91e. 
na-about, down 10.92. 
fid-back 10.93. 
wd-"back prog. (nd--, 3-3 ndyo--) 10.93a. 

fut. (nddo--, 3-3 ndido-) 10.93b. 
nd-(na-)back cont. (nd-, 3-3 nii-) 10.94c. 

nt-pf. (nd-, 3-3 niini-) 10.94d. 
yi-pf. (ndyi--, 3-3 rwh/£*-, 3 by 3 ndyo'-) 10.94e. 
ai-pf. (ndz-, 3-3 ndyiz-, nd-z-) 10.94f. 
inc.cess. (ndi- -, 3-3 ndyi--) 10.94g. 
pf.cess. (nei--) 10.94h. 
nd-against 10.95. 
nd-(nd-)against cont. (ni-, 3-3 yini-) 10.95a. 

m-pf. (ni--, 3-3 yini-) 10.95b. 
yi-ipL (ni--, 3-3 yini--, by 3 no*-) 10.95c. 
ai-pf. (ne-z-, 3-3 yine-z-) 10.95d. 
nd-*i-against un- . . . cont. (3-3 yino-) - 10.95e. 
On-, Ond-, Oni-against . . . 10.95f. 

prog. (yi--, 3-3 yiyo--) 10.95g. 
Ond-(nd- )against . . . cont. (yi-, 3-3 yi--, yiyi-, yi--) 10.95h. 
m-pf. (yi'-, 3-3 yi-ni-) 10.95i. 
yi-pL (yd-, 3-3 yiyiyi-, yi-) 10.95J. 
ai-pf. (yi-z-, 3-3 yiyiz-, yi*z-) 10.95k. 
Ond-(nd- )against . . . inc.cess. {yi'-) 10.951. 
pf.cess. (yi'-) 10.95m. 
nd*-(nd-)again 10.96. 

yi-pL 10.96a. 
m-absolute 10.97. 

m-uniform prog, (no--, 3-3 yino*-) 10.98. 
cont. (ni-, 3-3 yini-) 10.98a. 
yi-pf. (ni-, 3-3 yini--) 10.98b. 
«i-pf. (ne-2-, 3-3 yine-z-) 10.98c. 
inc.cess. (ni-, 3-3 yini--) 10.98d. 
pf.cess. (ni--, 3-3 yini--, 2 nini-) 10.98e. 
m-start for inc. (yi-, 3-3 yi- 9 3-i 't-) 10.99. 

m-pf. (ni-, 3-3 t/ini-) 10.99a. 
?n-(nd-)start for cont. (nd-, ni-, 3-3 yini-, by 3 ne*-) 10.99b. 
m-end cont. (ni--, 2 ni-) 10.100. 

m-pf. (nini-, 3-3 yinini-, yini--, ni-ni-) 10.100b. 
m-m-get stuck cont. (ne--, 3-3 yine--) 10.100c. 
yd- with verbs of speaking 10.101. 

176 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.74. 

2/t-progressive (yi-, yo--, 3-3 yiyo--) 10.102. 
2/i-continuative (yi-, 3-3-3 yiyi-) 10.103. 
yi-perfective (yi-, 3-3 yiyi--) 10.104. 
t/vcessative 10.105. 

fut. (yido--, 3-3 yido--) 10.105a. 

inc. (yi-, 3-3 yiyi--) 10.105b. 

pf. {yi-- 9 3-3 yiyi-) 10.105c. 

Repetitive 10.106. 

-(yt-)rep.asp. fut. (diyo--, 3-3 yidiyo--) 10.106a. 
cont. (yi-- t 2-i Hyi-) 10.106b. 
yi-pf. {yi-, 3-3 yiyi--) 10.106c. 
s?'-pf. (ye--, 3-3 yiye-z-, yi-z-) 10.106d. 
yi-with "see" cont. (yi-, 3-3 yo--) 10.107. 
yi-ni- have . . . like stat. (yi-, 4 djo--) 10.108. 
yi-ni-ch&nge cont. (yo-) 10.109. 

st-pf. (yo-z-) 10.109a. 
yi-ni-dovbthil destination cont. (yi-) 10.110. 

cust. (-yi-) 10.110a. 
m-pf. (yini--) 10.110b. 
si-pf. (yiyi-8-) 10.110c. 
inc.cess. (yini--) 10.1 lOd. 
pf.cess. (yiyini--, yi-ni--) lO.llOe. 
yi-ni-reciprocal effect 10.111. 

yi-(ni-) reciprocal effect fut. (yidd--, 3-3 yi-dd--) 10.111a. 
cont. (yd-, 3-3 yiyo-) 10.111b. 
2/t-pf. (yo-, 3-3 yiyi--) 10.111c. 
si-pf. (yd-, 3-3 yis; 3-i 'ayia-) lO.llld. 
opt. {yd--) lO.llle. 
ko-so far prog, (kwd--) 10.1 12. 

yi-pf. (by 3 ko-) 10.112a. 
xd- < cca-(nd-) up back pf.cess. (#ai-) 10.113. 
^-repetitive action 10.114. 

an-repetitive action prog, (xo--, 3-3 yiyo--) 10.114a. 
fut. (xido--, 3-3 yido-) 10.114b. 
cont. (xi-, 3-3 xiyi-, yiyi-) 10.114c. 
2^-pf. (yi--, 3-3 xiyi-) 10.114d. 
si-pf. (ara-, 3-3 xe-z-) 10.114e. 
xi-(nd- )repetitive action cont. (xi-, 3-3 yiyi--) 10.114f. 

st-pf. (a?o*z-) 10.114g. 
ai-y^-repetitive action fut.cess. (zwfo*-) 10.1 14h. 

inc.cess. (xi--, yi--, 3-3 yiyi--) 10.114i. 
pf.cess. (xi—, yi--, 3-3 yiyi--) 10.114J. 
cci-(2/t-)repetitive action repetitive aspect fut. (xidiyo--) 10.114k. 
#i-change position cont. (xa--, 3-3 xiyi-, yi--, yi-) 10.115. 

ni-pf. (xini; by 3 xe--) 10.115a. 
ajt-ni-change position prolongative cont. (xini-, 3-3 yiyi-) 10.115b. 

si-pf. (by 3 xi-8-) 10.115c. 
xo-place 10.116. 

:ro-place prog, (xo--, 4 xodjo--) 10.116a. 
abs. (xa-) 10.116b. 
cont. (xa-, 1 xa-c-) 10.116c. 
ni-pf. (xoni-, 2 xwi-ni-) 10.116d. 
yi-pf. (xo-) 10.116e. 
si-pf. (xaz-, xa-z-) 10.116f. 
xo-place with "see" cont. (xo--) 10.116g. 

10.74.-10.75. prefixes 177 

#o-(nd r _)place cont. (#d-, 1 x&c-, by 1 xac-) 10.116h. 

si-pf. (-xaz~) 10.1 16i. 
xo-ni-place start for (xo-) 10.1 16j. 
%o-yi'p\a,ce repetitive aspect cont. (xo-~) 10.116k. 

si-pf. (XO'S-) 10.1161. 
xo-yint.p\tu*A reciprocal effect cont. (-#d-, 1 xwi-ni-) 10.116m. 
xo-xi-(yi-)p\ace repetitive action repetitive aspect cont. (xwi--) 10.1 16n. 

si-pf. (xwi-z-) 10.116o. 
zo-si-things harm prog, (xcc-) 10.116p. 
fut. (xivi-do--) 10.116q. 
cont. (xo*-, 1 XO-C-) 10.116r. 
2/i-pf. (xo'C-, 1 xocic-) 10.116s. 
. at-pf. (xo>z-) 10.116t. 
si-perfective (si- t 3-3 yiz-) 10.117. 
-si- (nd- )perfective (-ndz-, 3-3 ndi-z-) 10.117a. 
fit-harm, un-. . . 10.1 1£, 
ai-heurm prog, («)•> 5-3 yiyo--) 10.118a. 

fut. {diyo-, 3-3 yidiyo--) 10.118b. 
C(>ni. (ai- f 3-3 yiyi--, 1 sis-) 10.118c. 
si-pf. (siz-, 3-3 yiyi-z-) 10.118d. 
opt. (s6-) 10.1 18e. 
-si-(nd-|harm cont. (~se--) 10.118f. 
m-pf. (-ae-) 10.118g. 
si-yi-ni-haxm change cont. (yo--) 10.118h. 
dzi-owsiy prog, (dzo--) 10.119. 
cont. (dzi-) 10.119a. 
m-pf. (dzi-) 10.119b. 
2/i-pf. (dzi-) 10.119c. 
te£-unce>tain prog, (tsi*-) 10.120. 
tei-(nd- )'jncertain cont. (4s6-) 10.120a. 
at-pf. (-tsiz-) 10.120b. 
dji-attitade 10.121. 

dj't-attitude fut. (dji'do*-, 3-3 yidzi-do--) 10.121a. 
cont. (djo-, 4 yidjoc-) 10.121b. 
yi-pf. (dj6-, 3-3 yidjo-) 10.121c. 
st-pf. (dzo-z-, 4 dzidzo-z-, 3-3 yidzo-z-) 10.121d. 
ico-usefuJ, fut. (tcoido*, tci-do--, 4 tcoijdo--) 10.122. 
tdi-out fut. (t6ido*-, 3-3 *dl-do-) 10.123. 
idi-(nd-) (>ut cont. (t64- 9 3-3 tdij/i-) 10.123a. 

m-pf. (tdini-, by 3 t6i-> by 4 <did^-) 10.123b. 
t6i-xi~(nd:) out repetitive action cont. (tdiyi-, 3-3 Jdtyi-) 10.123c. 
^-nt-inherent abs. (U-, 4 dyiZ-) 10.124. 

10.76-10.124. Paradigms 

10.75. 'a-indefinite pronoun, theme 

The indefinite pronoun (abbreviated i) 'a- must be distinguished 
from 'a-beyond, even though some forms are the same. Generally 
'a-indefinite pronoun is noted in the separate paradigms where 
forms of the type i or 3-i are given. Position is a distinguishing 
feature of 'a-beyond and 'a-indefinite pronoun. In the verbs that 
have both prefixes, of the type "something is moving off, beyond, 
into indefinite space" their differences can best be determined. 

178 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 10.75.-10.76a. 

'a-indefinite pronoun is relatively free and may be used with a great 
many verbs, or in combination with many prefixes. There are of 
course cases in which the difference between the two prefixes cannot 
be indubitably determined. 

'a-indefinite pronoun is the subject of the verbal noun or participle 
which may be formed with any of the stems: 'ado'zqsl (prog.) "love, 
affection, care;" 'aditci (pres.) "birth;" 'afte'eltci (pres.) "writing;" 
'actdqh (pf.) "fit, hysteria, being-fire-crazed" (5, 5.72.). 

In some verbs 'a- seems to be thematic; it is conjugated exactly 
as 'a-indefinite pronoun. 

10.76. 'a-beyond, progressive 

. . . ing beyond is taking place progressively 
... is . . . ing along beyond 
... is . . . ing . . . along beyond 
... is causing . . . ing along beyond 
... is causing . . . to . . . along beyond 

'a-beyond in the progressive has the same forms in the singular 
and dual as 'a-indefinite pronoun (10.102.). The prolongative of the 
type PI daHnvd- is used for the plural (10.111b.). Since 'a-beyond is 
relatively free no stems are listed for the progressive, almost any 
progressive stem may be used. 

10.76a. 'a-beyond future 

. . . ing beyond will take place 
. . . will . . . beyond 
. . . will cause . . . ing beyond 
. . . will cause ... to ... beyond 

Prefix 'a-beyond to the regular future forms (10.87.) and note: 

3-3 Hdo-- ('a-beyond; yi-3 obj.; di-fut.; t/t-prog.) 

4 'a;aV- ('a-beyond; dji-± subj.; dt-fut. ; yi-prog.) 

'adJdo-- ' J (' a - be y° nd ; da-pl-; 3^' 3 °bj*; dt-fut.; yi-prog.) 
P4 'adajdo'- ('a-beyond ; da-pl. ; djiA subj . ; di-fut. ; yi-'pvog.) 
\ ('a-beyond; 'a-i subj.; di-fut.; yt-prog.) 

1-i 'a'aVc- 

2-i Wdi- 

3-i 'a'aV- 


\ ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; di-fut.; yt-prog.) 

> ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; avfut.; t/i-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

> ('a-beyond; *a-i obj. dt-fut.; yi-prog.) 
"ai'to-- I ('a-beyond; d/t-4 subj.; 'a-i obj.; d£-fut.; ^i-prog.) 

> ('a-beyond; da-pl. ; 'a-i obj. ; dt-fut. ; yi-prog.) 

'adafto- J ( ,0 - b 6y<md;da-pl.;d/*-4 8ubj.;dt.fut.;yt-prog.) 

7 axi- . . . - T (fut.) repeated . . . ing off takes place, with verbs of carrying, 

P3-i 'ada'do-- 
P4-i 'adafdo*- 

lO.70 a --l () .76b. PBEBlXES 179 

>dde- or 'ooV . . . -dpi overeat; enjoy -beyond-capacity (YM 48) 

wya- . . . -td-l subjugate, subdue one (YM 190) 

>i- (< 'a-beyond-yi-cess.). . .-tsoh dye, color yellow 

'£=(< 'a^yond^^harm).;.--^-? kindle fire with drill; cause dis- 
integration (YM 115) 

Oda di-'a-beyond. . . -'d-2 put lid on, cover with round obj.; patch tire 
tube (YM 2) 

na- ... -T (fut.) knock . . . over (YM 78) 

yah- . . . -T (fut.) move . . . into enclosure 

yd--. '. .-T (fut.) move off, out of sight ; lose . . . obj. 

yd' -' a-hey ond-di- . . .-'a-l give Aip in fight, quit, desist from . . . (YM 3) 

10.76b. 'a-beyond continuative 

. . . ing starts beyond 
. . . starts . . . ing beyond 
. . . starts . . ,ing . . . beyond 
. . . causes . . . ing beyond 
. . . causes . . .ing . . . beyond 

'a-beyond precedes all personal pronouns — subject, object, and 
agent — as shown by its position in the plural and in prefix com- 
poundp. Position as well as combination with other prefixes differ- 
entiate it from 'a-indefinite pronoun. 

('a-beyond; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 
('a-beyond; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 
('a-beyond; yi-cont.) 
('a-beyond; d/i-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 
(*a-beyond; 'a-i subj.; yi-cont.) 
('a-beyond; yi-cont.; -id-Dl subj.) 
('a-beyond; yi-cont.; -o/t-D2 subj.) 
(*a-beyond; da-pl. ; yi-cont.; -id-Dl subj.) 
('a-beyond; da-pl. ; yi-cont.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 
('a-beyond; aa-pl.; yi-cont.) 
('a-beyond; da-pl.; d/i-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 
('a-beyond; yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.) 
('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 
('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 
('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.) 

('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; dji-4subj.; yi-cont.) 

('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -id-Dl subj.) 
('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 
('a-beyond; da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -id-Dl subj.) 
('a-beyond; aa-pl.; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 
('a-beyond; aa-pl.; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.) 
('a-beyond; da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; d?i-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 

~T (inc.) move . . . beyond, off indefinitely 

-'a*& (inc.) (~'a*£) be tempted beyond resistance, "fall for" 

-md-l (inc.) (-mal) bolt food, gulp noisily, (YM 143) 

4-tal (mom.) (4-tal) round obj. moves forcefully, kick 

•nih (mom.) (-nih) milk, do with the hand 

-ni-l (inc.) (-nil) burrow (YM 169) 

-yo-l (pres.) (-yol) take a breath, inhale (YM 234) 

-yeh (pres.) (-yeh) mate (WE) 

13 Ueichard 








J adji- . 


e e- 










y ada-- 


J adadji- 










Wdji- 1 

'a'idi- J 


H y i'd- 






y ada*oh- 





180 NAVAHO GRAMMAR l°-' 76b *"^.76c. 

•ZQ-8 (pres.) (-zg'8) tear fabric 

•si-h (inc.) (sih) cause hafted obj. to move, practice archery (YM 181) 

-tcil (inc.) (-tci-l) snowstorm is passing 

-lij (pres.) (-lie) urinate 

-dla-d (inc.) {-dial) rip, tear 

-dld'h (pres.) (-dloh) laugh 

'a-beyond-'a-i. . .-'a-h (inc.) (-'d-l) sun moves; some-round-obj . -starts 

'a-beyond-'a-i. . .-l-'j (pres.) (-l-'i-l) imitate act; cause-some-doing- 

'a-beyond-'a-i. . .-l-n& (pres.) (-l-n&l) imitate accomplishment, happen- 
ing; some-change-beyond-is-caused 

*dde . . . -d4 (pres.) (-di'l) overeat; eat-beyond-self-capacity (YM 48) 

'dya* ...-fa-h (pres.) (-td-l) subjugate, subdue one; self -under round - 
obj.-is-moved-beyond (YM 190) 

wo* . . . -T (inc.) knock . . . over; aside . . . moves . . . obj. (YM 78) 

yah- . . . -T (inc.) move . . . into enclosure 

yd' ... -T (inc.) move . . . off, out of sight, lose, be lost 

yd- . . . - y a-d (inc.) (-'al) lose fabriclike obj., move fabric out of sight 

yd' . . . -l-de'l (inc.) (-l-dil) throw ropelike obj. off, lose ropelike obj. 

Ottidji* xadah . . . -?-ne' (inc.) (-l-ni-l) bomb once; cause-round-obj.-to- 
move-forcefully-down-over-toward . . . (YM 165) 

OUidji* xadah . . .-l-ni*l (inc.) (-l-nil) bomb; cause-several-obj.-to- 
move-forcefully-down-over-toward . . . (YM 165) 

0-t6$*' . . . -yd'h (inc.) {-gd'l) one acts as intermediary for . . . , one inter- 
cedes for . . . ; one-goes-off -protecting . . . 

fc?£-out-'a-beyond-ni-(< nt-start for-[na-]) . . . -l-dj'h (inc.) (-l-dj-l) fight 
for survival (YM 48) 

10,76c. 'a-beyond yi-perfective 

. . . ing beyond has been taking place 

. . . has been . . . ing beyond 

. . . has been causing . . . ing beyond 

. . . has been . . . ing . . . beyond 

. . . has been causing ... to ... beyond 

Many forms of 'a-beyond yi-perfective are the same as those of 
'a-indefinite pronoun yi-perfective (10.104.); the following are 
different : 

PI y adai-d- ('a-beyond; a*a-pl.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -i-d-Dlsubj.) 
3-3 'ayi-- fa-beyond; yi-3 obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
by 3 V- ('a-beyond; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

3 by 3 'ayo-- fa-beyond; yi-3 subj. ; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-3 ag.) 
(3) by i 'a&iYo*- fa-beyond; 6i-[3] pass, subj.; 'arf-iag.; yi-prog.; -ni- 
i Ve- fa-beyond; 'a-isubj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

1-i Vi*- fa-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-prog,; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2-i y iH*ni- fa-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-prog. ; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
3-i Vi*- fa-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

4-i HHci-- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; a7i-4subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
Dl-i "Vi-d- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -i*d-Dl 

D2-i y o'o-- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.; -ni- 





i by 1 Ve*c- fa-beyond; Vi subj.; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 
i by 2 HH-ni- fa-beyond; 'a-i subj.; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.; -n-2 ag.) 
i by 3 Vo-- fa-beyond; 'a-i subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

The plurals of this conjugation, being repetitive, take ^-per- 
fective (10.117.). 

-£-V (-l-*a-l) substitute, send on errand 

-mas (-mqs) weave diamond pattern 

-mal (-mal) gulp noisily, bolt food (YM 143) 

-l-td-l (-I4al) move small obj. forcefully, kick 

-nil (-nil) burrow, dig hole (YM 168) 

-yd (-gd-l) one person moves off 

-kai (-kah) pi. persons move off 

-leal (mom. pf.) (-kal) hit, rap, knock with solid obj. (as hammer) 

-ka*l (-kal) drive nail 

-l-yod (-l-yol) one person runs 

•z4-> (-zq>l) beat wife (YM 234) 

-zfrz (-z$-8) tsar fabric 

-si] (-sih) cause hafted obj. to move, practice archery (YM 181) 

-tci'l (-tcil) snowstorm passes 

-lo 1 (-loh) pull string tight, taut 

-dld-d (-dial) rip, tear (YM 52) 

-dW {-dloh) laugh (YM 54) 

-dlo' (-dloh) be pulled tight ; cheat 

-tlij (-tlic) animate obj. falls, moves swiftly 

Vbeyond-'a-i . . . -l-ya- (-l-nfrl) imitate by doing, do as ... does 

'dde . . . -#<£•' (-dyl) overeat; eat beyond self-capacity (YM 48) 

'dya- . . .-t& (.fd-l) subjugate, subdue one (YM 190) 

'dya* . . .-Hil (-riti) subjugate, subdue several (YM 167) 

nahdjVOi-, . .-l-'e-z (-l-'is) push aside with foot; aside-to-a-point move- 
foot-against . , . 

yah- . . . -T (pf.) bring in, carry into inclosure 

yah- . . . -nV (-rlah) crawl into enclosure 

yd-- . . . -T (pf.) move . . . out of sight, lose . . . 

yd-- . . . -''ah (Sal) fabriclike obj. moves off, lose fabriclike obj. 

yd--. . . -nV (-Hah) crawl out of sight 

OUidji* xadah ...-l-ne' (-l-ni-l) drop bomb on it; round-obj. -moves- 
down-over-it (YM 165) 

OUid/jV xadah . . . -nil (-nil) drop bombs on it; move-several-obj. -down- 
over-it (YM 165) 

Ot64* . . • -yd (-gd-l) act as intermediary 

10.76d. 'a-beyond optative 

may . . . move . . . beyond 

The two following paradigms show the diversity of forms, 
particularly of contraction, for 'a-beyond-o-optative : 





y aH66- 













y aH66- 





(3) by i 



182 NAVAHO GBAMMAR J0,76d.-10.76f. 

The stems are obviously optative, but the abbreviations in 
parentheses ( ) indicate the stem of the regular conjugations to 
which they correspond : 

• T (prog.) move . . . 

-bcb'l (pres.) (-bal) hang curtain 

-&<£■' (pf.) (-tyl) win at gambling (YM 28) 

-ycf (opt.) (-gd-l) one person goes 

•yo-l (inc.) (-yol) blow off (YM 233) 

-kd-h (pres.) (-hah) make sandpainting 

-yeh (pres.) (-yeh) marry, mate (YM 79) 

-l-dji'd (inc.) (-l-dji'l) move carrying on back (YMG 106) 

-dlfr' (pf.) (-dlq-l) believe (YM 52) 

-tci*l (prog., inc.) stop snowing (YM 36) 

-tdi'h (inc.) (-tdih) breeze stops blowing (YM 40) 

10.76e. 'a-beyond future cessative 

. . . ing beyond will pause 
. . . will pause . . . ing beyond 
. . . will pause . . . ing . . . beyond 

The future cessative of 'a-beyond is formed by prefixing 'i*- 
< 'a-beyond-yi-cessative to the regular future forms (10.87.) In 
contrast with y a-yi- > 'f- are the forms with the indefinite object in 
which the contraction is 'a-beyond- fa-i obj .-?/i-cess.)-dt- > ('a-'i)-di- 
> 'Vidi- > 'i'di- or '*'#-. These forms are identical with those of 
'a-beyond-zi-repetitive action future, although the forms other than 
those with indefinite object have 9 i- instead of '*•-. 

l-i 'iYe-c- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-ceaa.; dt-fut.; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i 'iYi-- ('a-beyond; J a-i obj.; yt-cess.; di-fut,; yt-prog; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i Vfo-- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yi-cess.; dt-fut.; yt-prog.) 

4-i Hffo- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; yt-cess.; dji-± subj.; di-fut.; yt-prog.) 

•l-xoc ('a-i is thematic) sleep, go to sleep (YM 99) 
OHi . . . -1-tcH (3 only) have nightmare (YM 36) 

1 ciMH'do'Uci-l I will have nightmare 
OMidji' xadah . . . -l-ni-l drop a bomb on (YM 165) 
-IdUe 'adah . . . -l-ni-l round obj. falls from hand 

10.76f. 5 a-«/i-beyond inceptive cessative 

. . . starts to pause . . . ing beyond 
— starts to pause . . . ing . . . beyond 

The forms which differ from 'a-beyond continuative (10.76b.) are: 

2 't- ('a-beyond; yz-cont.; -t/t-cess.; -n-2 subj.) 

4 'ad/*-- ('a-beyond; dji-4 subj.; yt-cont.; -t/t-cess.) 

D2 'o-h- ('a-beyond; yi-cont.; -yi-cess.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

•zoh (inc. cess.) (-zoh) make a mark 
0- . . ,-l-xd-c (inc. cess.) (-l-xoc) put ... to sleep 
%d- . . . -l-xoc (cust.) (-l-xoc) sleep, go to sleep cust. 
IdUe 'adah . . . -Une* (-l-ni-l) round obj. falls from hand 

10.76g.-10.76i. pbefixes 183 

10.76g. Vyi-beyond perfective cessative 

. . . has paused . . . ing beyond 
. . . has paused . . . ing . . . beyond 

The only forms of the perfective cessative that differ from the 

inceptive cessative (10.76f.) are: 

2 H-ni- ('a-beyond; ?/t-prog.; -yi-cess.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
D2 '©•- ('a-beyond; yi-prog.; -t/i-cess.; ~oh-D2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

-l-xa-j (-l-xoc) sleep, go to sleep (YM 99 has si-pf.) 

-htci* (4-tcih) dye red, redden 

0- . . . -la-h (-U-1) imitate, do as ... does 

(3) by 4 bVtdi-la-h he is imitated by 4 
-laMe J adah . . . -Z-ne' (-l-ni-l) round obj. falls from hand 

10.76h. 'a-yi-beyond repetitive aspect continuative 

. . . ing is taking place beyond repeatedly 
. . . is . . . ing beyond repeatedly 
. . . is . . . ing . . . beyond repeatedly 

The forms of Vbeyond-yi-repetitive aspect that differentiate 
it from Vindefinite pronoun-yi-repetitive aspect continuative 
(10.106b.) are: 

2 Hni- fa-beyond, t/i-cont.; -t/i-rep.asp.; -n-2 subj.) 
3-3 Hyi- ('a-beyond; yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.; -yi-rep.a6p.) 

-I4a-l (inc.) (-l-tal) kick; move small obj. forcefully 

-nih (pres.) (-nih) do with the hand, milk, knead 

-ei-h (pres., inc.) (-sih) cause sharp obj. to move forcefully 

10.76L 'a-yi-beyond repetitive aspect si-perfective 

. . . ing has taken place beyond repeatedly 
... is ... ing beyond repeatedly 
... is ... ing . . . beyond repeatedly 

In the conjugation of 'a-yi-beyond repetitive aspect si-perfective 
'a-beyond is prefixed to the forms of 2/i-repetitive aspect si-per- 
fective (> the type 'aye-, 10.106d.). With the indefinite object 
phonetic changes, usually retroactive, occur : 

1-i HHy6~ ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep. asp.; -c-1 subj.; 

2-i HHyini- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; si-pf. ; -yi-rep. asp.; -n-2 subj.; 

3-i Vi'«- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep. asp.; -ni-compl.; 

4-i *a'£(5i*s- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; a*;i-4 subj.; si-pf.; ~yi~ rep. asp.; 
-ni-compl.; -J-caus.) 
Dl-i HHyi-d- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; si-pf.; -t/i-rep. asp.; -ni-compl.; 

-i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2-i HHyo'- ('a-beyond; 'a-i obj.; si-pf. ; -yi-rep. asp.; -o/t-D2 subj.; 

Pl-i 'adaHyi'd- ('a-beyond; cta-pl.; 'a-i obj.; si-pf.; -j/i-rep. asp.; -ni- 
compl.; -irf-Dl subj.) 

184 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.76i.-10.7 51 * 

P2-i Hda'yo-- fa-beyond; da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; si-pf.; -t/t-rep. asp.; °^" 

D2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
P3-i 'adaH-8- fa-beyond; a*a-pl.; 'a-i obj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep. asp,: n ^' 

compl.; -2-caus.) 
P4-i 'adaHdis- fa-beyond; aa-pl.; 'a-i obj.; dji-4: subj.; si-pf.; -yi-iPP- 

asp.; -ni-compl.; -£-caus.) 

-T (pf.) move . . . beyond rep., load 

-de-' (-dak) group goes off one by one (NT 378 : 15) 

~l-gtyj (-l-gqc) shoot witch obj. 

10.76J. 'a-a^-repeated action beyond continuative 

. . . ing is repeatedly taking place beyond 
... is repeatedly . . . ing beyond 
... is repeatedly . . . ine . . . beyond 

Prefix Vbeyond to the regular forms of ^'-repetitive action 
continuative (10.114c.) and note: 

4 'adji-- fa-beyond; ; dji-4 subj. ; yi-cont.) 

3-3 Hyiyv- (Vbeyond; yi-3 obj.;; ^i-cont.) 

-T (pres., inc.) 

10.76k. 'a-a^-beyond repeated action yi-perfective 

. . .ing has been repeatedly taking place beyond 
. . . has been repeatedly . . . ing beyond 
. . . has been repeatedly . . . ing . . . beyond 

Prefix 'a-a^-beyond repetitive action to regular forms 9* V^' 
perfective (10.104.) with the following results: 

1 'axi-~ fa-beyond; a?; yi-pvog.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 'axi-ni- fa-beyond; ari-rep. ac.; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3 J ayi-- fa-beyond; xi-rep. ac; ^t-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

4 'adjiyi-- fa-beyond, xi-rep. ac; dji-4 subj.; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 
3-3 H*yi-- fa-beyond; xi-rep. ac; yi-Z obj.; yi-prog,; -ni-compl.) 

For the indefinite pronominal forms prefix 'i- < 'a-beyond to the 
regular indefinite pronominal forms of yt-perfective (10.104.) and 

4-i %H6%'- ('o-beyond; 'a-i obj.; a?; dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.; 


. -l-xan (-l-x<j,-l) move, jerk, throw . . . obj. (YM 92) 

'o-theme. . . -nil (-nil) dig, burrow, bore hole (YM 92) 

xa- . . .-fid (-td'l) round obj. is rep. moved out 

xa-. . . -l-q, (-l-'&'l) round obj. is rep. caused to move out 

O-tty . . .~tah (mom. pf.) (-tal) spring toward . . ., dart at . . . (YM 187) 

10.761. 'a-xt-beyond repeated action si-perfective 

. . . ing has taken place repeatedly beyond 
. . . has repeatedly . . . ed beyond 
. . . has repeatedly . . . ed ... beyond 

10.761.-10.76n. PREFIXES 185 

Prefix 'a-beyond to regular forms of zi-repeated action-si-per- 
fective (10.114e.); the resulting forms are of type 'axi-, that is, the 
si-forms have x instead of s initial. Note: 

Pl-i Hda'si-d- ('a-beyond;; da-j)L; 'a-i obj.; si-pf. ; -n£- 

compl. ; -i-d-T>l subj.) 
P2-i 'ida'so-- ('a-beyond;; da-pl.; \t-i obj.; si-pf.; -oA-D2 

subj.; -ni -compl.) 
P3-i Hda'ye-8- fa-beyond; a?; aa-pl.; 'a-i obj.; si-pf.; -ni- 


-T (pf.) . . . rep. moves 

-l48xas (-l-tsxis) switch, whip; jerk ropelike obj. 

-l-tk'd (-l-tiil) throw plural objects (YM 93) 

10.76m. 'a-xi-yi-beyond repeated action repeated aspect future 

repeated . . . ing will take place beyond repeatedly 
. . . will repeatedly . . . beyond repeatedly 
. . . will repeatedly ... it beyond repeatedly 

Prefix 7 i- < 'a-beyond-zi-repeated action to the forms of the 
repetitive aspect future (10.106a.) and note: 

1 Hdiye-c- ('a-beyond; xi-vep. ac; o't-fut, ; j/i-prog. ; -yi-rep, asp.; 
-c-1 subj.) 
3-3 H'diyo-- ('a-beyond; ai-rep. ac; yi-3 obj.; di-fut.; yi-prog.; -yi- 
rep. asp.) 
1-i 'idtfye-c- ('a-beyond; rri-rep. ac.; di-fut.; 'a-i obj.; yt-prog.; -yi- 

rep. asp.) 
3-i H-dVyo-- ('a-beyond;; a*i-fut.; 'a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -yi- 

-T (fut.) move . . . 

10.76n. 'a~xi-yi-beyond repeated action repeated aspect 


repeated . . . ing is taking place beyond repeatedly 
repeatedly . . . is . . . ing beyond repeatedly 
... is repeatedly . . . ing . . . beyond repeatedly 

The double repetitive requires ^'-repetitive action and -yi~ 
repetitive Aspect, 'a-beyond is prefixed to the xi-^/i-forms in the 
form of 'iyi- < 'a-xi-yi-. Consequently the result is H- prefixed to 
the regular forms of 2/i-repetitive aspect continuative (10.106b.) 
and note : 

1 Hyi-c- ('a-beyond;; yi-cont. ; -yt-rep.asp.; -c-1 subj.) 

3-3 Hyiyi-- ('a-beyond;; yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.; -g/i-rep.asp.) 
4-i HHdi-- ('a-beyond;; 'a-i obj.; dji-4: subj.; yi-cont.; 


Plural: prefix 'ida- (< 'a-beyond-a; to the regular 
yi-repetitive aspect continuative forms (10.106b.) 

-T (pres., inc.) move . . . 

186 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.76o.-10-76r. 

10.76o. 'a-si~beyon& un- . . . future 

un- . . . ing will take place indefinitely 
. . . will un- . . . indefinitely 
. . . will un- ... it indefinitely 

Prefix 'r- (< 'a-beyond-si-xxn-) to regular future forms (10.87.). 

-l-ttfyl kindle fire with drill; cause disintegration (YM 115) 
Mi-Bever . . . ^<d loosen, untie hair (YM 16) 

10.76p. J a-«si-beyond un- . . . continuative 

un- . . . ing is taking place indefinitely 
... is un- . . . ing indefinitely 
... is un- . . . ing . . . indefinitely 

1 Vc- fa-beyond; ai-un-; yi-contr 9 -c-1 subj.) 

2 H-- fa-beyond; si-un-; t^-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 V- fa-beyond; ai-xm-; yi-cont.) 

4 y adjo-- fa-beyond ; dji-4 subj. ; si-un- ; yi-cont,) 
Dl H'd- fa-beyond; ai-xm-; yi-cont.; -vd-Dl subj.) 
D2 'o-h- fa-beyond; si-xxn-; yi-cont.; -oh- D2 subj.) 

4-Mq-h (pres.) (4-Hd-l) kindle fire with drill, cause disintegration 
(YM 115) 

Oi-(< O-nd-against). . .-rlih (-rli-l) lightning strikes . . . (YM 165) 
3 bd'o-riih lightning struck him 

0i-(< 0-nd-against)nd-cust. . . ,-riih (cust.) (-rli-l) . lightning strikes cust. 
(YM 165) 

td--(<. 2a-among-nd-back) . . . 4-di-h (inc.) (4-dah) assembly is adjourning 
breaking up 

td-ni-(K nd-back)nd-cust 4-dah (cust.) (4-dah) assembly cust. ad- 
journs (YM 44) 

10.76q. 'a-si-beyond un- . . . si-perfective 

un- . . . ing has taken place indefinitely 
... is un-. . .ing indefinitely 
... is un- . . . ing . . . indefinitely 

1 %• si- fa-beyond; *i-un-; si-pf.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 'i*smi- fa-beyond; ai-un-; ai-pf. ; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3 Vs- fa-beyond; si-xm-; ai-xyf.; -ni-compl.) 

4 'adzo-z- fa-beyond ; dji-4: subj. ; «i-un- ; si-nf. ; -ni-compl.) 
Dl H-si-d- fa-beyond; si-un-; ai-pf.; -ni-compl. ; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 H-80-- fa-beyond; ai-un-; ai-pL; -oh-T>2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

-l-bd (4-bj-l) win at gambling 

Oi-(< O-nd-against). . .-nV (-rii-l) lightning strikes. . .(YM 166) 
td--(< /a-among-nd-back) . . ,4-de-' (4-dah) meeting breaks up (YM 44) 

10.76r. 'a-si-ni-beyond un- . . . continuative 

This combination of prefixes seems to be alternant with 'a-si-; 
little differentiation in meaning can be determined. The forms are 
the same as those of 10.76p., with the following exceptions; the 
difference is the presence of ni-: 

1 0.76r.-10.76u, PREFIXES 187 

2 H-ni- ('a-beyond; 8i-xm-;ni- ? ;-n-2subj.) 

Dl 'i-ni-d- ('a-beyond; si-\m-; ni- ? ; -vd-Dl subj.) 
D2 H-noh- ('a-beyond; «i-un-; ni- ? ; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

-£-6f fc (inc.) {-l-bi-l) win at gambling (YM 28) 

Oct- (> 0a-) . . . -bj-h {-fyl) lose at gambling (YM 28) 
td--(< *a-among-«a-back) . . . -l-di-h (inc.) (-l-dah) crowd breaks up, 
meeting adjourns 

10,76s. 'a-si-yi-beyond tin-. . . repetitive aspect continuative 

un- . . . ing is taking place repeatedly beyond 
... is un- . . . ing beyond repeatedly 
... is un- . . . ing . . . beyond repeatedly 

1 H-c- ('a-beyond; st-un-; -yi-rep. asp.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 'ayi- ('a-beyond; si-un-; -yt-rep. asp.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 H-- ('a-beyond; si-\xa-; -yi-rep. asp.) 

4 'adji-- ('a-beyond; d/t-4 subj.; st-un-; yi-rep. asp.) 
Dl H-d- ('a-beyond; *i-un-; -yi-r&p. asp.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 *ayoh- ('a-beyond; st-un-; -^-rep.asp.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

-z4 (pres.) (-zq-l) beat wife (YM 234) 

nd- . . . -z4'h (cust.) (-zq-l) beat wife cust. (YM 234) 

10.76t« 'a-dzi-beyqnd away continuative 

. . . ing away beyond is taking place 
. . . is . . . ing . . , away beyond 

Prefix 'a-beyond to the continuative forms of dzi-away (10.119a.) 
and note : 

4 H'dji- ('a-beyond; d^t-away ; djiA subj.; yi-cont.) 

PI 'adadzi'd- ('a-beyond; da-pl.; dzt-away; yt-cont.; -i'd-Dl subj.) 
P4 *adadziz- ('a-beyond; da-pl.; dzi-&w&y; dji-4 subj.; yi-cont^ 

-T (inc.) move . . . 
-ge-h (inc.) {-goh) ram, tackle (YM 89) 
•ka'd (inc.) (-kal) slap; move surface 
-l-xa-l (inc.) (4-xal) club, hit with club 

10.76u. 'a-dzi-beyond away yi-perfective 

. . . ing away beyond has been taking place 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . away beyond 

Prefix 'a-beyond to the regular yt-perfective forms of dzt-away 
(like dt-yi-pf. with dz instead of d initial 10.88b.) and note: 

4 Hyidji-- ('a-beyond; dzi-&w&y; djiA. subj.; yt-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
P3 'adadzv- ('a-beyond; aa-pl. ; dzi-away; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
P4 *adayidjv- ('a-beyond; aa-pl.; dzi-away; d?i-4 subj.; yi-prog.; -ni- 
compl. ) 

-T (pf.) throw, cast away, hurl 
-ba'l (-bal) throw curtain away 
-td-l {-tal) kick off (YM 186) 
-2-ne' (-l-ni'l) throw one round obj. 
-go' (-goh) ram, tackle (YM 89) 

188 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.76u.-10.77. 

-lead (-hal) slap; move surface away 

-l-xaj (4-xac) bite; move away biting 

-l-xa-l (-l-xal) club; move club away; move away clubbing 

•si* (sih) hurl sharp obj.; throw hafted obj. 

•djih (-djih) claw 

•tfi'h (-tif-l) sling, throw (YM 213) 

10,76v. 9 a-dzi-yi-beyond away repetitive aspect continuative 

. - . ing away beyond is taking place repeatedly 
. . . is . . . ing . . . away beyond repeatedly 

'a-dzi- is prefixed to -yi- repetitive aspect continuative (10.106b.) 
with the following phonetic changes : 

1 'adji'C- fa-beyond; ozi-away; yi-cont.; -yi-rep. asp.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 y ad4i- ('a-beyond; dzi-away; yi-cont t ; -yi-rep. asp.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 'adzi*- fa-beyond; dzi-&w&y; yi-cont.; -yi-rep. asp.) 

4 'azdzi-- fa-beyond; dzi-away; dji-l subj.; yi-cont. ; -yi-rep. asp.) 

~T (inc.) move .... 

-to (mom.) {-foh) shoot arrow into space 

10.76W. 9 a-dzi-yi-beyond away repetitive aspect si-perfective 

. . . ing away beyond has taken place repeatedly 
. . . has . . . ed ... beyond repeatedly 

'a-dfei-beyond away is prefixed to ^-repetitive aspect si-perfective 
(10.106d.) and numerous phonetic changes take place, particularly 
because of the combination of sibilants : 

fa-beyond; azi-away; si-pf.; -yi-rep. asp.; -c-1 subj.; 

fa-beyond; dzi-aw&y; ai-pf.; -yi-rep. asp.; -n-2 subj.; 

fa-beyond; dzi-away; si-pf. ; -yi-rep. asp.; -ni-compl.) 
fa-beyond; azi-away; dji-4 subj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep, asp.; 
fa-beyond; da-pl.; dzi-away; yi-S obj.; -si-pf. ; -yi-rep. 

asp.; -ni-compl. ; -£-caus.) 

-T (pf.) move . . . 

-to (-toh) shoot arrow 

-l-gqj (-l-gqc) shoot witch obj. 

10,77. 'ato'-ni-(wd-) suffer continuative 

. . . suffers for . . . 

. . . puts forth great effort for . . . 

'ata'-suffering, when prefixed to the inceptive m-start for (nd-) has 
the following forms : 

faU-suffer; ni-start for; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 
fati-suffer; ni-start for; [nd-]; -n-2 ag.) 
fa£i-suffer; m-start for; [nd-]) 
f aU-suffer; dji-4 ag. ; ni-start for; [nd-]) 
fa£i-suffer; ni-start for; [nd-]; -i-d-Dl ag.) 
f aii-suffer; ni-start for; [nd-]; -ofc-D2 ag.) 




'adzin - 


















y atio'h- 

10.77.-10.79. prefixes *89 

-l-'i (pres.) (-Z-'f I) desecrate, cause injury to (NT 432: 10) 
-Vyh (-l-*i'l) mistreat (Ad 1/49 : 9) 

Ua. . . -t% (pres.) {-ty-l) put forth great effort for, suffer for . . .'s benefit 
(YM 162) 

10.77a. 'atf-auffer, ni-{nd-) perfective 

• ... has put forth effort for . . . 

. . . has suffered for . . . 

'otl-suffer with ni-{nd-) perfective (10.99c.) has the prefixes in 
order *ati-ni-{n&-) with (nd-) taking the place of -m-completive, the 
general effect of 'ati- being to lengthen the familiar prefixes. 

by 1 'ati-c- ('aH-suffering; m-pf. ; [nd-] -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 'ati-ni- (Vi-suffering; m-pf.; [nd-]; -n-2 ag.) 

by 3 "atfr- ('aJi -suffering; m-pf.; [nd-]) 

by 4 'atidji*- ('a^-suffering; dji-4 ag. ; m-pf.; [nd-]) 

by Dl 'ati-d- ('erfi -suffering; m-pf.; [nd-]; -id-Dl ag.) 

by D2 "atio-h- ('aii-suffering; m-pf.; [nd-]; -oh-T>2 ag.) 

-l-'y' (-l-'i'l) mistreat 
Od . . . -fyd (-fyl) exert great effort, suffer f or . . . (YM 162) 

10.78. *&-{n&-) static 

The following paradigm is used with absolute stems. Some have a 
continuative form, others are perfectives, 

('d- ?; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

('d- ?; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 


('d- ?; <^-4subj.;[wd-]) 

(>d- ?; 'a-i subj.; [nd]) (rare) 

('d-?;[nd-]; 4-&D1 subj.) 

('d- ?; [nd-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

I'd- ?; yt-3 obj.; [nd-]) 

(*d- ?; da-ph; [na-]) 

('a- ?; da-pl.; dji-4 subj.; [nd-]) 

-<£tn be lacking, wanting 
-/-fa'i be thin, shallow 
-fe be an object 
-ti, -fy be a person 

do- tsi-d . . . -U-dah be firstrate, hard to beat, rival (YM 221) 

do- yd- . . . -c0'-dah be no good, worthless, wicked 

td- ... -U (P only) all are 

td- . . . -l-tsoh (P only) . . . are all . . . 

fd* . . . -la (P only) both do, all do 

Dl 'dni-dla we both 

D2 'dnohla you both 

10.79. '&-{%&-) thus relatively static continuative 

... is . . . er than . . . 
Prefix 'a-thus to the regular wa-against continuative (10.95a) 
with the following results : 














y anoh- 


•i-, 'i- 

























190 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.79.-10,80. 


('d-thus; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

fd-thus; [nd-]) 

('d-thus; dji'4 subj.; [nd-]) 

fd-thus; 'a-i subj.; [nd-]) 

('d-thus; [nd-]; -t'<2-Dl subj.) 

('d-thus; [rid-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

('d-thus ; da-pl.; [nd-]; -vd-Dl subj.) 

('d-thus; da-pl. ; [nd-] ; -0&-D2 subj.) 

__ ('d-thus; da-pl.; [nd-]) ( ?) 

P4 "djdani- ('d-thus ; d?t-4 subj. ; da-pl. ; [nd-]) ( ?) 

-l-dd'S weigh more than, be heavier 
-l-di-l be larger than (YM 47) 
-l-t&'l be wider, broader than 

y dxonlU-l (stat.) place is relatively wide 
-l-ni-z be taller, deeper than 
-zd-d be farther than 

-l-tsd-z be larger than (of anything not fully grown) 
4-tsoh be larger than (of anything of established size) (NT 226 : 20) 
-l-t&ozi be slender, narrow 

10.80. 'd-thus progressive 

. ing thus progressively is taking place 

. is . . . ing thus progressively 
, . is . . . ing . . . thus progressively 
, . is causing . . . ing progressively 
, . is causing . . . to . . . progressively 

'd-thus is thematic with verbs of being, doing, creating, construct- 
ing, accomplishing, happening, disappearing, and saying. 

1 'd-c- ('d-thus; t/t-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 'd*-, '{•- ('d-thus; yt-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 'd-- {'d-thus; ^t-prog.) 

4 'ddjo-- (*d-thus; djt-4 subj.; yi-prog.) 
i 'o'o-- ('d-thus; 'a-i subj.; yi-prog.) 

Dl 'rd- (*d-thus; t/t-prog.; -vd-Dl subj.) 

D2 'd-h-, y 6-h- ('d-thus; t/i-prog. ; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Plural: Prefix 'd-thus to regular da-plural progressive forms 
10.84).) and note: 

P2 'dda-h- ('d-thus; da-pl.; yt-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

P3 'dda-- ('d-thus; da-pl.; yi-prog.) 

3-3 7 dyo-- ('d-thus; j/i-3 obj.; 2/i-prog.) 

(3) by i 'abVto- ('d-thus; bi- [3] subj.; 'odt-i ag.; yi-prog.) 

2-i '6'o-h- ('d-thus; 'a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -o/t-D2 subj.) 

-'t-i do 

-l- 9 i'l cause doing 

-l-di-l get rid of, cause to dwindle, destroy, become worse (YM 48) 
do- '6-d\'l he hasn't a chance to live FH 
4\'l be done 
-ni'l happen, change 
-hni'l create, construct; change-is-caused 
-ni say, tell ; report thus (in exact words) 
•U-l, -li'l make, construct 

I0.80a.-10.80b. PREFIXES 191 

10.80a. 'a-thus future 

. . . will . . . thus 

. . . will ... it thus 

. . . will cause . . . ing thus 

. . . will cause . . . ing . . . thus 

Prefix s a-thus to the regular forms of the future (10.87.) and note : 

4 'djdo*- ('d-thus; dji-4 subj.; di-fut.; y^-prog.) 

Plural: Prefix 'ada- to the future dual forms.. 

3-3 'i-do- ('d-thus; yi-3 obj.; di-fut.; yi=prog.) 

3 by 3 'dyido-- ('d-thus; yi-S subj.; dtrfut.; yi-prog.; -yi-3 ag.) 

.'fJ do 

-l-'j-l cause doing 

-l-di'l get rid of, caus§ to dwindle, destroy, become worse (YM 48) 

-tyl be done 

•ni-l, -ni'l ^ ch an g e> happen 
4-n4'l, -l-yii'l create, change; change-is-caused 
" n ^ tell, say; report thus (in exact words) 
-hA, -li-l make, construct 

a-tnus-na*-again. . .-die-i, -divt make, construct again, make another 
*d-thus-nd*-again-dt- . . . -dlfrl, -dli-l create, compose again, another . 

10.80b. 'a-(na-)thus continuative 

. . . ing thus is taking place 

... is ... ing thug 

. . . is . . . ing , . . thus 

('d-thus; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 
('d-thus J [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 
('d-thus; [nd-]) 
('d-thus; d/t-4 subj.; [nd-]) 
('d-thus; 'a-i subj. ;[nd-]) 
('d-thus; [nd-]; -id-T>\ subj.) 
D2 *dh-> 'oh- ('d-thus; [nd-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Plural: prefix 'd- to regular da-pl. continuative dual forms; note 
that (nd~) does not appear in the plural (10.84a,) : 

3-3 't*-, y iyi- ('d-thus; yi-3 obj.; [nd-]) 

P3-3 'dda-- ('d-thus; da-pl.; yt-3 obj.; yt-cont.) 

by 3 'iyi-, '*■- ('d-thus; [nd-]; -yi-S ag.) 

(3) by i 'dbiti- ('d-thus; 6t- [3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; [nd-]) 

P3 by 1 J dda-c- ('d-thus; da-pl.; yi-3 subj.; yi-cont.; -c-1 ag.) 

P3 by 2 "ddani- ('d-thus; da-ph yi-3 subj.; yi-cont.; -ni-2 ag.) 

P3 by 3 'ddayi- (*d-thus; da-pl.; yi-Z subj.; yi-cont.; -yt-3 ag.) 

P3 by 4 'ddadji- ('d-thus; <2a-pl. ; dji-4 ag. ; yi-Z subj. ; yi-cont.) 

S{ (pres.) (-*i'l) do, act 

~l-'i (pres.) (-l-'yl) cause doing, acting 

-l-di'h (pres.) (-l-d\-l) destroy, disappear; cause to be wanting, lacking 

-U (mom.) (-te*i) be, a thing is 

-ti (abs.) person is 

-t% (pres.) (-fi'l) be done 

-ni*h (pres.) {-ni-l f -ni-l) happen, change 

-l-nfrh (pres.) (4-n4-l, -l-ni-l) make, do; change is caused 


'dc- 9 '6c- 


*dn- t 'ini- 









192 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.80b.-10.80d. 

-U-h (pres.) {-U-l, -li-l) make, construct, compose 

-Ze' (mom.) (-U-l y -li-l) make, construct 

-dld'h (pres.) (>dl6'l, -dli-l) be made, be done to 

I 'a-theme. . .-tcfrh (pres.) (-tcfrl) (3 only) be left out, be insufficient 
for . . . 
1 c£6tce-h I was omitted (in distribution) (YM 34) 
4 x6*4tce*h he(4) was omitted (in distribution) 

10,80c. 'd-thus yi-perfective 

. . . ing thus has been taking place 

. . . has been . . . ing thus 

. . . has been . . . ing . . . thus 

'd-thus prefixed to the yi-perfective forms (10.104.) causes various 
phonetic changes: 

1 'a--, 'i-- ('d-thus; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 H-ni- ('d-thus; yi-prog. ; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3 'a-- ('d-thus; yvprog.; -ni-compl.) 

4 'ddji-- ('d-thus; dji-± subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
i HH-- ('d-thus; 'a-i subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

Dl 'i-d- ('d-thus; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 '<K ('d-thus; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

Plural: Prefix 'd-thus to regular dual ^'-perfective forms (10.104.) 
and note : 

P3 'add-- ('d-thus; da-pl.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

3-3 'dyi-, 'i-- ('d-thus; yi-3 obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
by 1 y dc- ('d-thus; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

^ 'dyi-- \ ('<*-thus; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 'adjr- ('d-thus; d?'i-4 ag.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

3 by 1 'd-c-y 'i'C- ('d-thus; yi-3 subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

i by Dl H*i-d- ('d-thus; 'a-i subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -i d-Dl ag.) 

i by D2 '6'o-h- ('d-thus; 'a-i subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -oh-T>2 ag.) 

-£-'£*' (-l^\-l) make, do 

-l-dj-d (-l-d\'l) disappear, become scarce 

•ty-d (-l-fy'l) do, be done 

•l-ya- (-l-nd'l, 4-ni'l) be made, constructed 

-dza- (-H6-1, -ni-l) be made, done, constructed 

-la- (-16-1, -Ivl) be made, done, constructed, created 

-Id (-16-1) cohabit 

I 'a-theme. . . -£c$-' (-tcfrl) (3 only) be left out in distribution 
tea/' . . . -nV (-Hi) be constipated (YM 31) 
tdfrh , . . -£-'£■' {-l-'j'l) look in vain, try to find 
tdfrh . . . -l-'yd (-£-'f £) try in vain; fail at doing 
t66-h . . . -t\;d (-ff d) be made, done in vain 

10.80d. 'd-thus si-(nd-) perfective 

. . . ing thus has taken place 

. . . has ed thus 

. . . has . . . ed ... thus 

10.80d.-10.80g. PREFIXES 193 

Prefix 'i-thus to the regular forms of si-(nd-) perfective (10.1 17a.) 
and note : 

(3) by i 'dbi'tis- ('d-thus; bi-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag. ; si-pL; [nd-]) 

•dfy-d (-dj-l) disappear 

(3) by i 'abi'fisdj-d riddance 
-l-dj-d (-l-dj-d) destroy ; cause to disappear 

10.80e. 'a-(nd-) thus inceptive cessative 

do . . . thus completely 
make . . . thus completely 

The following conjugation seems to be 'a-^a-J-t/i-cessative 
although there is some doubt about the analysis: 

1 H-c- ('d-thus; ^t-cess. ; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 y i-ni- ('d-thus; yi-cess.; [nd-]; -n-2subj.) 

3 'dyi- ('d-thus; y^-cess.; [nd-]) 

4 'ddji- ('d-thus; djiA subj. ; yi-cess. ; [nd-]) 

(3) by i 'dbVti- ('d-thus; bi-[Z] subj.; 'adi-i ag.; yi-cess.; [nd-]) 

-l-^'h (inc.cess.) (-l-'i-l) do, make completely 

-l-'i'h (inc.cess.) (-J-'f £) be caused to do, to be made completely 

10.80f. 'a-d-(wd-)thus optative 

may (let) ... do ... thus 
may (let) ... do it thus 

The prefix 'd-thus-(7ia-) illustrates the rule of the optative 
(10.82a.) that -^-o-inflective prefix > -o*-; the conjugation has 
- initial. 

1 'd-c- (*d-thus; -d-opt.; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 'd-- ('d-thus; -d-opt.; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3 'd*- ('d-thus; -d-opt.; [nd-]) 

4 'ddjo-- (*d-thus; dj't-4 subj.; -d-opt.; [nd-]) 
Dl 'd'd- ('d-thus; -d-opt.; [nd-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 'd*&- ('d-thus; -d-opt. ; [nd-] ; -o/i-D2 subj.) 

-d\-h (-di'l) disappear (YM 47) 
-Z-ne' (-l-n£-l f -l-ni'l) do 
•l-ni-h (-l-nfrl 9 -l-ni*l) do, make 

Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . . -l-'a-c (-l-'ac) two persons overtake (NT 


10.80g. 'a-Vthus beyond inceptive cessative 

. . . ing thus is pausing . . . ing beyond 
... is pausing . . . ing thus beyond 
... is pausing . . . ing . . . thus beyond 

When s d-thus is prefixed to the regular cessative forms of *a- 
beyond (10.76f.) a retroactive phonetic change takes place so that 
'd-thus-'t* -beyond cessative > Vf-: 

1 'tVc- ('d-thus; 'o-beyond; yi-cont.; -yi-cess.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 HHni- ('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-cont.; -yi-cesa.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 Vi*- ('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-cont* ; -yt-cess.) 













by 1 



• (-l-ni'l, 

-la- ( 

-IH, 4H) 

194 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.80g.-10.§l . 

4 HHdi-- ('d-thus; 'a-beyond; d/i-4subj.; yi-cont.; -yi-cess.) 

Dl H 1 vd- Cd-thm; 'a-beyond; yi-cont.; -yi-cess.; -id-Dl subj.) 

D2 'oVfr- ('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-cont.; -yi-cess.; -5^-D2§llbjr) 

-\-h (inc.cess.) {-\l) make, do 

yo-\ . . -l-'i'h (inc.cess.) (-l-'yl) bury, lay to rest; put out of sight 
(NT 430:8) 

10.80h. 'd-'a-thus beyond perfective cessative 

. . . has paused . . . ing thus beyond 
. . . has paused . . . ing . . . thus beyond 

When 'd-thus is prefixed to the 'a-beyond perfective cessative 
forms (10.76g.) the following changes take place: 

('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; -yi-cess.) 
('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -yi-cess.) 
('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-prog.; -yi-cess.) 
('d-thus; 'a-beyond; dji-4: subj.; yi-prog.; -yi-cess.) 
('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-prog.; -yi-cess.; -i'd-Dl subj.) 
('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-prog.; -oA-D2 subj.; -yi-cess.) 
('d-thus; 'a-beyond; yi-prog.; -yi-cess.; -c-1 ag.) 

l-ni-l) make 
construct, make 

10.80i. J d-yim-thuB reciprocal effect continuative 

. . . ing with reciprocal effect is taking place 
. . . is . . . ing having reciprocal effect 
. . . is . . . ing . . . having reciprocal effect 

Prefix 'd-thus to regular continuative forms of ytfm'-reciprocal 
effect (10.111b.) and note: 

by 1 '6-C-, H-nc- (*d-thus; yi-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef. ; -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 H-ni- ('d-thus; yi-rec.ef.; -n£-rec.ef. ; -n-2 ag.) 

by Dl *d-nvd- ('d-thus; yi-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef.; -id-T>\ ag.) 

by D2 H-noh- ('d-thus; yi-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef.; -oh-T>2 ag.) 

1 by 2 y dci-ni- ('d-thus; ci-1 subj.; yi-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef.; -n-2 ag.) 

2 by 1 'anoc- ('d-thus; ni-2 subj.; yi-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef.; -c-1 ag.) 

2 by PI y ddani-ni-d- ('d-thus; da-ph; ni-2 subj.; yi-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef.; -i'd- 

Dl ag.) 

3 by PI 'ddiini'd- ('d-thus; oa-pl.; yi-3 subj.; yi-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef.; -i-d-D 


•sin (pres.) (-sf 2) maintain, retain position; keep from . . . (YM 182) 
y ayoi . . .-Hi ((pres.) (-nil) love, have always in mind (YM 153) 
y ayd-di . . . -rii (pres.) (-Hil) love, regard as favorite (EW 108: 12) 

10.81. 'd-, 'ddi-reflexive 

The reflexive prefix 'd- or 'ddi- may be used like other object iv 
(possessive) prefixes with a postposition, in which case it is writto 
as an independent word. 

As verbal prefix the phonetic character and position of 'd- do m 
allow it to combine with all prefixes and it may therefore havi 1 1 
glide prefix -di- in combined forms. The glide syllable persists 1 1 \ < 

10.81.-10.82. prefixes 195 

ii v,cu w r r«f«o D intervene between the two parts of 'd-di- t and when 
it is present, it is conjugated. Note that all examples are passive; 
they suggest that 'a- is the subject. 

10.81a. 'ddi-yi-ni-Belf reciprocal effect continuative 

self is being . . . ed with reciprocal effect 

self is being . . . ed with reciprocal effect by . . . 

Prefix 'ddi-seli to the regular forms of ^-wz-reciprocal effect 
continuative (10.111b.) and note: 

by 1 'ddynic- fddi-self; i/i-rec.ef.; -ni-rec.ef.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 'ddi-ni- ('ddi-self; t/i-rec.ef. ; -ni-rec.ef.; -n-2 ag.) 

by 3 'ado- ('ddi-self; i/i-rec.ef. ; -ni-rec.ef.; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 'ajdo- ('d-self; dji-4: ag. ; di-glide; 2/i-rec.ef. ; -ni-rec-ef.) 

by Dl 'adini'd- fddi-self; yi-rec.ef. ; -ni-rec.ef.; -i-d-Dl ag.) 

by D2 'adinoh- ('ddi-self; 2/i-rec.ef. ; -ni-rec.ef.; -oh~T)2 ag.) 

'ddi-self-'a-theme. . ,-l-zin (pres.) (-l-z\-l) maintain, protect, keep one- 
self from ... (YM 242) 

10.81b. 9 ddi-si-&e\i harm continuative 

self is being harmed . . . ing 

self is being harmed . . . ing by . . . 

by 1 'ddi-c- (*ddi-self; si-harm; yi-cont.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 'ddiyi- ('ddi-self; si-harm; t/i-cont,; -n-2 ag.) 

by 3 'ddi*- ('ddi-self; si-harm; yi-cont.; -yi-§ ag.) 

by 4 J ajdi-~ ('d-self; dji-4: ag. ; si-harm; yi-cont.) 

4-yi (pres.) (-l-yfrl) one person commits suicide; self-killing is caused 
(YM 78) 

10.81c. 'ddi-si-self harm *i-perfective 

self has been harmed . . . ing 

self has been harmed . . . ing by . . . 

Prefix 'a-di-self to regular forms of si-harm si-perfective (10.1 18d.) 
and note : 

by 1 'ddiyic- ('dete-self; si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 *&diyini- ('ddi-self; si-harm; si-pfi.; -ni-compl. ; -n-2 ag.) 

by 3 'ddi'S- ('ddi-self; si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

by 4 *6jdi*8- ('d-self; cfy'i-4 ag. ; si-harm; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

-l-yi (4-yfrl) one commits suicide; self killing is caused (YM 78) 

10.82. -d-optative 

may (let) . . .ing take place 
may (let) . . . move . . . 

Since there is only one stem for the optative, apparently derived 
from one of the other stems, whose form cannot be predicted, the 
stem is given in the formulas and in parentheses the form used else- 
where, as prog., inc., etc., is indicated. It is to be understood as an 
optative stem, its relation to one of the other principal parts being 

14 Reichard 

1 96 NAVA H O GRAM MAB 10.82. 

merely suggestive. For example, if the optative formula is indicated 
as di- . . . 4-bqs (prog.), -l-bqs is to be interpreted as an optative stem 
complex with form like the progressive. 

The simplest optative is of the type Co- (10.82b.). Many prefixes 
that precede -d- lose their vowels, the initial only remaining, for 
example, di-6- > do-. These prefixes would seem to indicate that 
aspective prefixes are not included in the optative conjugations. 
That this is apparent rather than real is shown by the continuative- 
progressive prefixes yi-, which with the optative become y-, for 
example, yd-. I take this phenomenon to mean that aspective pre- 
fixes function, at least formally in the optative. 

In these forms it is conceivable that a word, which cannot have 
zero as an initial (instead of a consonant) requires a formal element 
yi- which becomes y under the influence of -o-. Consistency would 
therefore seem to indicate that the aspective prefixes function in the 
optative as well as in the other conjugations. I would explain forms 
like yd- "may he. . ., let him ..." as yi-prog.-d-opt. > yd-, or yi- 
cont.-d-opt. > yd-. This seems reasonable in view of the fact that all 
optative stems have progressive or continuative forms, with the 
exception of a few which are perfective stems. We should remember, 
however, that yi- is also a progressive prefix of the perfective, and 
therefore represents a "system" (8.38-8.42.). 

The optative forms of 'a-beyond, of the type 'ayo'-, in contra- 
distinction with 'a-indefinite pronoun of the type -d- seem to 
corroborate the conclusion. We have seen (10.76b.) that 'a-beyond 
combines with 2/i-continuative in a way that distinguishes it 
markedly from 'a-indefinite pronoun. This distinction is carried 
consistently through the optative, and is further exemplified in the 
optative forms of 10.76d. of type -0*- when prefixes indicating a 
system — cessative, repetitive, and customary — combine with -d- 
optative. On the other hand, si-harm does not represent a system 
and it has some optatives of the type so-, others of type so*- (yo*-). 
It is reasonable to conclude, therefore, that the optative form 
depends upon the position of the prefixes with which it enters into 
combination. If the prefix precedes -d-optative and no inflective 
prefix follows it, the preceding prefix loses its vowel (usually i) and 
retains its consonant — 'a-i-d- > 'd-; di-6- > d6-; dini-j>rol.-6- > 
dino-; ni-uniform-d- > no-; m-start for-d- > no-; z/i-prog.-d- > yd-: 
yi-cont.-6~ > yo-; > xo-; xo-place-d- > xo-; si-harm-d- 
> so- (yd-); dzi-awa,y-6- > dzo-; d?t-attitude-d- > djo-. 

If -d-optative is followed by an inflective prefix, that prefix 
affects -d-, lowering its tone and lengthening it — di-6-(n&-) > do*-; 
di-o-yi-cess. > do'-; di-d-yi-rep.asp. > do*-; m-uniform-d-yi-cess. > 
no*-; m-uniform-d-yi-rep.asp. > no*-; yi-cont.-d-t/i-cess. > yo*-; yi- 
cont-d-^i-rep.asp. > yo m -; si-harm-d-yi-rep.asp. > so*- (yo*-); li-in- 
herent-d-yt-rep.asp. > lo*-. 

82a.-10.82d. prefixes 197 

10,82a. Some prefixes with vowel -i- with optative and an in- 
flectional prefix result in a long o with falling tone, -d' — 0£-against 
. . .-6-(nd-) > 0&-] yi-ni-Tec.ei.-6' > yd--; t6i-out-6-(nd-) > U6 m -; 
fc#-d-^-rep.asp. > tdfr-. 

If an optative of the type Co- is preceded by a prefix with a high 
tone, the two combine into a long vowel cluster with falling tone; a 
process that combines the rules of 10.82. and 10.82a. — 'ata'-suffer- 
6-(nd-) > *atio*-\ 'aWd-away from one another-d-(wd-) > 'altido*-; 
'a-thus-d-(na-) > 'd*-; 'd-thus-wa-back-o-(na-) > 'anao--; wd-back- 
6-{nd-) > nacr-. 

10.82b. If the vowel of the prefix preceding -d-optative is o and an 
inflective prefix follows the optative, the result is a long o with 
falling tone, -6* — 'd-thus-#o-things-d-(7id-) > 'dx6*-. 

If the vowel of the prefix preceding -d-optative is -6- and an in- 
flective prefix follows the optative, the result is -6' — ko-ihus-o-yi- 
cess. > k&~. 

In other words, -d-optative dominates o or d as it does preceding 
i or t. 

10.82c. -o' -optative type form 

The forms of the -er-optative paradigm result from a combination 
of -d-optative and an inflective prefix (infl.) — for example, -yi- 
cessative, -yi -repetitive aspect, (nd-), etc.; the pattern is: 

1 -o-c- (-d-opt.; infl. ; -c-1 subj.) 

2 -6-- (-d-opt.; infl.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 -o*- (-d-opt.; infl.) 

4 ~dji- . . . -o'-(dji-4L subj. ; -d-opt. ; infl.) 
i 'a-...-o*- Ca-i subj.; -d-opt.; infl.) 

Dl -o-d- (-d-opt. ; infl. ; ~id-Dl subj.) 

D2 -o-h- (-d-opt.; infl.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

3-3 yi~. . .'O'- (yi-3 obj.; -d-opt.; infl.) 

(3) by i bito'- {bi-\$\ subj.; y adi-i ag. ; -d-opt.; infl.) 

10.82 d. -d-optative type form 

1 -6c- (-d-opt.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 -d*- (-d-opt.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 -d- (-d-opt.) 

dji-\ .-d- j^- 4 sub J*' -d-opt.) 

1 'a-. . .-d- J^' 1 sub ^ ; ■o-°P t -) 

Dl -o-d- (-d-opt.; -id-Dl subj.) 

D2 -o-h~ (-d-opt.; -oA-D2 subj.) 

3-3 yd 

f- 1 

Plural: prefix rfa-pl. to regular dual forms and note: 

P3-3 dayo 

dayi-. . -d- J-(da-pl. ; yi-Z obj.; -d-opt.) 

%yo- 1 

i>yi- . . -d- Mda-p 
zi- . . . -d- J 


198 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 10.83.-10.85. 

10.83. 6t-(7ia-)against it, seeO-nd-(nd-)against . . . (10.95-10.95m.) 

10.84. da-plural 

da-plural is a relatively free pre-paradigmatic prefix, but since it 
enters into phonetic combination with prefixes following it," the 
progressive and continuative conjugations are given for convenience. 

da-plural progressive 

plural subjects are . . . ing progressively 
. . . are . . .ing plural objects progressively 

PI dai'd- (da-pL; yi-prog.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

P2 daoh- (da-pL; yi-prog.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

P3 dei- (da-pl. ; yi-prog.) 

P4 dadjc- (da-pl.; dji-± subj.; yi-prog.) 

Pi da'o'- (da-pl.; 'a-i subj.; yi-prog.) 

P3-3 dayo'- (da-pl.; yi-3 obj.; yi-prog.) 

10.84a. da-plural continuative 

plural subjects are . . .ing 
plural subjects are . . .ing . . . 
. . . is . . .ing plural objects 

PI dai*d- (da-pl.; yi-cont.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

P2 dah- (da-pl.; yi-cont.; -oh-T)2 subj.) 

P3 da-- (da-pl.; yi-cont.) 

P4 dadji- (da-pl. ; dji-4 subj. ; yi-cont.) 

Pi da'a- (da-pl.; 'a-i subj.; yi-cont.) 
P3-3 dai- 1 

dei- f (da-pl. ; yi-3 obj. ; yi-cont.) 
dayi- J 

P4-i da'tdi- (da-pl.; 'a-i o'bj.; dji-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 

10.85. da-down 

da-down is the prototype of prefixes of type Ca-: wa-about, 
wa-down, and xa-up out, are conjugated as da-down with change 
of initial. 

da-down is prefixed to regular conjugations, the future, for 
example, but combines with some prefixes: dei- < da-down-yi-3 
obj.- di-fut., and others. 

da-down continuative 

. . . ing down is taking place 
. . . is . . . ing down 
. . . is . . . ing . . . down 

In the continuative the forms of da-down are the same as those of 
da-plural; the singulars and exceptions follow: 

1 da-c- (da-down; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 dani- (da-down; yi-cont. ; -n-2 subj.) 

3 da-- (da-down; yi-cont.) 

D2 da>h- (da-down; yi-cont.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

10.85-10.86. prefixes 199 

(3) by i dabi'ti- (da-down; bi- [3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; yi-cont.) 
-ya>h (inc.) (-gd-l) one person gets down, dismounts 

10.85a. da-down yi-perfective 

. . . ing down has been taking place 
. . . has been . . . ing down 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . down 

1 d&- (da-down; yt-prog.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-coropl.) 

2 diini- (da-down; yt-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3 da- (da-down; yt-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

4 dadji" (da-down; d/t-4 subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
Dl dei-d- (da-down; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -i'd-Dl subj.) 
1D2 dao-- (da-down; yt-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
$-3 dayi-- (da-down; yi-3 obj.; t/t-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

by- I da-c- (da-down; y^-prog. ; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 da-- (da-down; yi-prog.; -ni-compl,; ~yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 dadji- (da-down; dji-<± ag.; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

(3) by i dabi'to-- (da-down; bi-[Z] subj.; 'adt-i ag.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

-yt& {-g&'t) one person goes down 

'a.-beyond. . . -tlij (-tlic) one person falls 

0- . . . -yd (-gd-l) one person goes down off . . . ; dismounts 

xa-. . .-l-t€ i-We-l) drop sticklike obj. (YM 197) 

10.86b. da-down si-perfective 

. . . ing down has taken place 
. . . has . . . ed down 
. . . has . . . ed ... down 

Prefix da-down to regular ^-perfective forms (10.117.) and note: 

3 da-z- (da-down; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

, . I (da-down; yi-% obj.; at-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

d 'iA' I (da-down; 'a-i obj. ; dji-4 subj. ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

P4-i dadaH&iz- \ f(da-pl.; da-down; 'a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; si-pf.; 
dadaHSiz- J \ -ni-compl.) 

10.86. da-misfortune 

da-misfortune is a prefix differing in meaning from da-down 
(though possibly related to it), which is used with stems of sickness, 
dying, disintegration, deterioration, misfortune, and the like. 
Although its forms seem to be exactly like those of da-down in the 
continuative and si-perfective, the combinations may result from 
da-si-harm — there are no test forms, da-misfortune is used with 
singular stems only, d^m-prolongative (10.91~10.91d.) being used 
with plural verbs of illness and dying : 

-teak (pres.) (-tsa-l) one person is ill, is dying, disintegrating 

-gan (pf.) (-gah) it is dried, dessicated 

-tsq, (pf.) (-tsa-l) one person is very ill, one died 

Ota-, . ,-l-ni-' (pf.) (-l-nih) there is an epidemic; misfortune is amongst 

. . . (YM 158) 
n-. . . -l-ftaj, -l-Ua-j (pf.) (-l-ttac) be cramped from sitting (YM 116, FH) 

200 STAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.87.-l().88a. 

10.87. di-future 

. . . will . . . 
. . . will ... it 

The future may be interpreted as an inceptive progressive if that 
is not a contradiction. It is very stable and free; nearly all active 
stems have a future form. Future and progressive stems are nearly 
always identical (cp. 12.29-12.60.). 

1 de-c- (di-fut.; yi-prog. ; -c-1 subj.) 

2 di-- (di-fut. ; yi-pvog. ; -n-2 subj.) 

3 do-- {di-fut.; yi-prog.) 

4 djido-- {dji-4: subj. ; di-fut. ; yi-prog.) 
i "ado*- <*c*-i subj. ; di-fut. ; yi-prog.) 

Dl di'd- (dt-fut.; yi-pvog. ; -id-T>l subj.) 

D2 do-h- (di-fut.; yi-prog.; -o/&-D2 subj.) 

Plural : Prefix da-plural to the regular dual forms and note : 

P4 dajdo'- (da-pl. ; dji-4 subj. ; di-fut. ; yi-prog.) 
3-3 yido>- (yi-3 obj.; di-fut.; yi-prog.) 

dldo°- } (^-p l '> y { ~ 3 ob J* » <^- fut - ; y*-pw>g-) 

3 by 3 yido-- (yi-3 subj.; di-fut. \ yi-prog.; -yi-3 ag.) 

(3) by 3 bido-- (6i-[3] subj.; dt-fut. ; yi-prog. ; -yi-Z ag.) 

(3) by i bi'to-- (bi-[3] subj. ; 'a-i ag. ; di-fut. ; ^i-prog.) 

10.88. di-emit, emanate from, originate from 

dt-start from 
In addition to di-future there are two di-prefixes, one of the 
progressive-continuative system meaning "emit, emanate from, 
originating from;" the other, di-start from of the inceptive system, 
di-emit may be used with any stem, but becomes distinctive: in the 
future where it is prefixed to di-future (of the pattern didcr-); in 
taking the present rather than the inceptive stem of the continua- 
tive, and in requiring t/t-perfective (progressive), di-emit may be 
prefixed to di-start from inceptive, in which case the latter is con- 
jugated, and takes si- ratSher than 2/i-perfective. The main difference 
between the two prefixes is in usage which determines the meaning 
and therefore the stem chosen. The two di-pref ixes constitute there- 
fore a complete conjugation including all essential stems given as 
principal parts. The only conjugation lacking is wi-perfective. If 
there is overlapping of function, for example, between present and 
inceptive, the two prefixes seem to be the same. 

Another di-prefix (pre-paradigmatic) means more specifically 
"pertaining to fire;" it is treated like the others, the stems, its 
position, and the context differentiating the meaning, di-pertaining 
to fire probably derives from dzi- (cp. 10.119.). 


10,88a. di-emit, emanate from, originate from present 
di-start from inceptive 

... is starting to . . . 

, . . is starting to ... it from 
















(dt-start from; -c-1 subj.) 
(dt-start from; -n-2 subj.) 
(dt-start from) 
(dji-4 subj.; dt-start from) 
Ca-i subj. ; dt-start from) 
(di-start from; -id-T)l sj^bj.) 
(d^-start from; -oh-Tf2 subj.) 

Plural: Prefix da-pl. to regular duals and note: 

P4 dajdi- {da-jp\, ; djiA subj. ; d^-start from) 

3-3 yidir i{yi-% obj. ; dt-start from) 

P3-3 dd&idi- (da-pl. ; yi-Z obj. ; dt-start from) 

4-'i 'ajdi- ('a-i obj. ; dji-4: subj. ; di-start from) 

T?l-i dctti-d- (da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; di-start from; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

P2-i da'toh- (da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; dvstart from; -oft-D2 subj.) 

P3-i da'fi- (da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; di-start from) 

P4-i daHdidi- (da-pl. ; 'a-i obj. ; dji-4 subj. ; dvstart from) 

(3) by i bVti- (6t-[3] subj. ; 'a-i ag. ; di- start from) 

di-start from m%v theoretically be used with any inceptive stem; 
a few compDunds are listed. 

/- . . . 4cid (-tcil) release from hand, let . . . go (YM 35) 

'arri-together . . .-l-ka4 (-l-kal) chop, split wood; cause chopping apart 

to start (YM 113) 
biy<f,-h . . .-l-te'h (-l-ifrl) harness one horse to wagon ; cause-live-obi.-to- 

move-in-front-attached-to-it (YM 35\ 
biy$-h . . .-nl'l {-wM) Viamoss horses to wagon; cause-several-obj.-to- 

mfct-edge-da-pl.-'a-theme. . . -htrf (-htfyl) sprinkle of rain, rain in large 

splotches (YM 228) 

3 nikiddtiltsf it is raining in splotches 
dzt-away . . . -l-don (-l-do-l) shoot with gun 
dzi-away . . . -l-fo-h (-l-toh) shoot arrow 
dzi-away. . ,dji-h (-djih) claw 
01 dzi-away . . . -'tf*d (-'al) hit with fabriclike obj. 

10.88b. df-emit ^'-perfective 

emitting has been taking place 

. . . has been emitting . . . 

. . . has been emitting . . . ing it 

1 di-- (di-emit; yt-prog.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 di-ni- (d*-emit; yi-prog. -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3 di-- (d*-emit; yt-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

4 dqidi-- (dji-4 subj.; di-emit; j^-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 
i 'adi-- ('a-i subj.; di-emit; s/i-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

Dl di'd- (di-emit; 2/i-prog. ; -ni-compl.; -fd-Dl subj.) 

T>2 do-- (dt-emit; yi-prog.; -oh-D2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

Plural: Prefix da-pl. to regular dual forms. 

by 1 dec- (dvemit; y^-prog.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 do-- (dt-emit; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

by 4 djido-- (dji-4 ag.; dt-emit; yi-pvog,; -ni-compl.) 

202 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.88b.-10.88o. 

1 by i ci'fo'- (ci-l obj.; J a-i ag. ; di-emit; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

(3) by i bi'tio-- (bi-[3] subj. ; 'a-i ag. ; di-emit; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

-nt*' (-nih) hurt, suffer 
'Vi'd (-yi m i) become holy 
l-dzid (abs.) be putrid, rotten 
-jd- y spit 

-tdic (mom. pf.) (-tdic) be rough (YM 42) 
-lid (-lil) smoke, cause smoking (di- with this verb means "fire") 

'd-self . . . -l-de-' (-l-ddh) clean self 
'd-self. . . -l-jo*' (-l-joh) brush, comb self, comb hair 
'd-self. . . -tdi-j {-tdic) be bored; self-is-rasped 
'£-(< 'd-self -nd-against) . . . -££•' (-fd-l) eat close to the bone 
'*-(< 'a-i-nd-against)'a-i. . .-sol (sol) whistle; cause-blowing-some- 
thing-against-something (YM 184) 

O . . . -tcid (-tcil) release, let . . . go (YM 35) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against). . . -l-tg' (4-tg-l) break brittle obj. (as dish) 
Oi-(< 0-nd-against) . . . -l-(% > (-l-fih) lay rope against . . . 
Oi-(< O-nd-against). . .-li-d (-lil) scorch, brown in pan (as food, fat) 
dak- . . . -ttq-d (-Uq4) be cramped in body (FH) 

dd--(< di-fire-nd- -again) . . ,-l-djd-' (4-djah) build fire again (YMG 75) 
... di- . . . -nd-d (-rial) have feeling of . . . 
n- . . . -td'd (-fol) become ragged, tattered (YM 205) 
niki-edge-da --pi. . . ,-l-tsi' (~l-ts\-l) rain splotches, there is a sprinkle of 

big raindrops (YM 228) 
^•--a-beyond. . . -\£ (-'d-l) quit, give up . . . (YM 3) 
#a-out. . . -l-tcid (-l-tcil) do hand-trembling (FH) 

10.88c. <Zi-start from si-perfective 

. .ing has started 

starting has taken place . . . ing 

. . . has started to . . . 

. . . has started to ... it 

Many forms of di-start from si-perfective are the same as those of 
si-perfective with d instead of s initial. However, the full paradigm 
is given to show the contractions and to indicate the influence of 
position : 

1 dd- (di -start from; si-pi.; -c-1 subj.; ni-compl.) 

2 dinl- (di-start from; si-pi. ; -n-2 subj. ; ni-compl.) 

e-z- 1 (di-start from; si-pi.; ni-compl.) 

J- (dji-4 subj.; di-start from; si-pi.; ni-compl.) 

3 de- 

4 djide* 


i 'ode*- 
'ade-z- f ^ a ** SU ^J*' di-start from; si-pi. ; ni-compl.) 

DI di-d- (di-start from; *i-pf.; ni-compl. ; -i*d-Dl subj.) 

D2 do-- (di-start from; si-pi.; -oh-T>2 subj.; ni-compl.) 

P4 dazde-- (da-pl. ; djiA subj. ; di-start from; si-pi. ; ni-compl.) 

Pi da'te-- (da-pl.; 'a-i subj.; di-start from; si-pf.; ni-compl.) 

3-i y ade-z- ('a-i obj.; di-start from; si-pi.; ni-compl.) 

4-i 'azde-- \ , . 

'azde-z-i * a ~ l obj,; ^' 4 8ub J-J »*-start from; si-pi.; ni-compl.) 

Pl-i da'ti-d- (da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; di-start from; si-pi.; ni-compl.) 

10.88c.-10.88d. prefixes 203 

P2-i da'to-- (da-pl. ; 'a-i obj. ; di-start from; si-pi. ; -oh-T>2) 

P3-i da'te-- (da-pl.; 'a-i obj. ; o*t-start from; st-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

P4-i da'azde-- \ f (da-pl.; 'a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; di-start from; $i-pf.; 
da'azde'Z-) \ -ni-compl.) 

^ , [ (di-start from; si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 de-3- (dt-start from; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -yi-% ag.) 

by Dl de-d- (d^-start from; st-pf.; -ni-compl.; -t*d-Dl ag.) 

by D2 dieo-h- (dt-start from; *i-pf.; -ni-compl.; -o/i-D2 ag.) 

3 by 3 yide-s- (yi-3 subj.; dt-start from; *i-pf.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

(3) by i bi'te-s- (bi-[3] subj. ; 'a-i ag. ; di-st&rt from; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

-'d-? (-'etc) two persons go 

-6a-' (-bah) go to war, go raiding 

-de-' (dah) (-dak) group moves in order 

-yd (-g&'l) one person goes 

3 de-yd he has started to go 

-y4- 9 (•?&) eat te en *) 

-go' (-goh) plunge 

-kai (-kah) pi. persons go 

-Mid (-Mil) be humped, rounded 

-si' (sih) move hafted obj. 

•l-jah (-l-jah) be curved, forked, pronged 

Oa- ...-'# (-'d-Z) give round obj . to ..., come to agreement with ... 

biyd-h . . *-l-td- y (-l-tfrl) harness horse to wagon 

biyfyh . . . -nil (-nil) harness horses to wagon 

dd-in front. . . -l-tiin (-l-tlj-l) dam is clogged, dam up 

na-down-^ . . . 4-t6d-l (4-i6ql) drop, drip (YM 39) 

ra' xi- . . . ~nd' y (-riah) earth quakes (FH) 

.m-after. . . -yd (-gd-l) one person starts after 

xd--(<C xa-out-nd-h&ck)xi- . . . -ne-z (-ties) make into a long roll (NT 

404:23) . . . -T (pf.) start . . .ing rep. ; start loading . . . 

10.88d. di-start from inceptive cessative 

there is pausing starting ing 

. . . starts to pause . . . ing 
. . . starts to pause . . .ing . . . 

di-start from with t/t-cessative becomes di- and is treated like 
yi-yi-inceptive cessative with d instead of y initial (10.105b.). The 
prefixes are used with the customary or inceptive cessative stem. 

3-3 yidv- (yi-3 obj.; d^-start from-^-cess.) 
-tlah (-tlil) stun, render powerless (BS) 

'i-(< 'd-self-nd-against)-n-(< nd-cust.)--(< 'a-theme). . .-l-'i-h (cust.) 

(-l-'i-l) make something of oneself (YM 160) 
Oi-(<i O-nd-against) . . . -l-ka-l (-l-kal) support with determination; 

stand behind . . . 
Oi-(K O-nd-against). , .-tsi'h (-tsih) point sticklike obj. at definite point 

(as on a chart) (FH cp. YM 227) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against). . .-l-dje'h (-l-djah) solder, weld, glue to. . . ; cause 

to adhere to ... (YM 105) 

204 NAVAHO GBAMMAK 10.88d.-10.88e. 

0(-(< 0-nd-against)-^-(< nd-)cust. . . . -t&ih (-tsik) point sticklike obj. at 

definite point oust. (FH) 
dah-forth . . . T (inc.cess.) start forward 
daft-forth-w-(< nd-)cust. . . . T (oust.) start forward cust. 
na-about. . . -l-ka-l (4-kal) play shinny; hit hard obj. about 
nd-up. . . T (inc.cess.) pick ... up 
m-end . . . -l-dje-h (-l-djah) lay fuel, make a fire (WE) 
?i-(< nd-against) . . . -1-tSin (-l-tii'l) give a punch (YM 224) 
n£-(< nd-against )nd-cust. . . ,-1-tSf-h (-l-tii'l) punch cust. (YM 146, 224) 
n£-(< nd-cust.)nd-up-t/i-change pos.. . .-fa' (-tal) jump up from sitting 

or reclining position (YM 185) 
OMi'. . .-l-tei-d (-l-tcil) put thumbprint on (YM 35) 
0#i--(< 'a-beyond) . . . -dla-d {-dial) sun shines on. . . . (YM 52) 
OM-n-(<i nd-cust.) . . . -1-tcV (-l-tcil) put thumbprint on cust. (YM 35) 
OM-n-(<L nd-cust.)--(< 'a-beyond) . . . -dla* (-dial) sun cust. shineson . . . 

(YM 52) 
OMi-na-cvwt.-xo- . . .-'d-h (-'d*2) accuse . . . cust. (YM 2) 
0#i-#o-things. . .-'a'h (-'d-l) accuse . . . (YM 2) 

4 biUixojdi^a^h he(4) is accusing him 
#a-out-ni-(< nd-cust.)nd-back. . , -t\-h (-fyl) dress cust. 
Ozd #{-(< Afi-over-nd-against) . . ,-ni-h (-nih) strangle with hands 

(YM 157) 

3-3 yizd Uvdi-nvh he is strangling him with hands 
Ozd Afi-(< Afi-over-nd-against) . . . -le-h (-loh) strangle with rope (YM 137) 
Ozd #£-(< #t-over-wd-against)-w-(< nd-cust.). . .-rlih (-rlih) strangle 

with hands cust. (YM 157) 
Ozd #£-(< A&-over-nd-against)-w-(< nd-cust.). . .-dloh (-dloh) strangle 

with rope cust. (YM 137) 

10.88e. di-start from, emit perfective cessative 

starting has paused . . . ing 
. . . has paused starting . . . ing 
. . . has paused starting . . . ing ... 

The perfective cessative of cK-start from has the same forms as 
yi-pause perfective cessative with d instead of y initial (10.105c). 

3-3 yidi-- (yi-S obj.; dt-start from; -yi-ce&8.) 

-tcfr" (-tcah) yawn (YM 38) 

-tlah (-tlil) stop, stun, render powerless, paralyze (BS) 

*axi-(< 'axt-together-nd-against) . . ,-tda-l (abs.) colors run 
'G^nd-opposite-Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . . -'d (abs.) have a branch, pro- 
jection on each side (usually of corn) (NT 182 : 3) 
'£-(< 'd-self-nd-against)-(<'a-theme). . .-ya- (-nfrl) make self . . ., make 

something of oneself (YM 160) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . . -Vd (abs.) projection at particular point of . . . 

(YM 11) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against). . .-l-dji-' (-l-djah) solder, weld, glue; cause to 

adhere (YM 105, HM) 
0£-(< O-nd-against) . . . -tda-l (abs.) solid, liquid absorbs taste 
<2an-forth. . . -yd (-gd-l) one starts off (YM 64) 
^-suffering. . . -l-ya- (-l-ni-l, -l-nvl) be wounded (YM 160) 
niki- . . . -yd (-gd-l) one person learns to walk (as baby) (YM 63) 
OAfi-over. . . -l-teid (4-tcil) put thumbmark on . . . (YM 35) 

10 .88e.-10.88g. PREFIXES 205 

OA!t-over--(< 'a-beyond). . .-dld-d (-dial) sun shines on . . . (YM 52) 

OAft-over-xo-things. . . -'# (-'d-l) accuse 

arot-out-n-d'-again. . .-dza-h (-ri£-l, -rlvl) dress again 

Ozd Ui-(< #t-over-nd-against) . . . -nv' (-nih) strangle with hands 

(YM 157) 
Ozd tti-(< Aft-over -nd-against). . ,46* (4oh) strangle with rope (YM 137) 
nd- . . . T (pf.) pick . . . up 

3-1 ridcidi-Uih he picked me up (EW 116 : 24) 

10.88f. di-j/i-start from repetitive aspect continuative 

ing starts from repeatedly 

. . . repeatedly starts . . . ing from 
. . . repeatedly starts . . . ing . . . from 

di-start from with yi -repetitive aspect continuative becomes di'- 
and has forms like yi -repetitive aspect continuative with d instead 
of y initial (10.106b.). Note: 

4 djidi-- (d/i-4 subj.; di-start from; -yi-rep.asp.) 

i J adi-- fa-i subj.; di-start from; -^/i-rep.asp.) 

Pi da'fi-- (da-pl.; 'a-i subj.; di-st&rt from; -yi-rep.asp.) 

4-i 'ajdi-- (*a-i obj. ; dji-± subj. ; avstart from; -s/i-rep.asp.) 

D2-i 'adiyoh- fa-i obj.; dt-start from; -t/i-rep.asp.; -oh~T>2 subj.) 
Pl-i da*tiyi-d- (aa-pl.; 'o-iobj.; o*i -start from; -yi-rep.asp. ; -vcf-Dlsubj.) 
P2-i da'tiyoh- (da-pl. ; 'a-i obj. ; di-start from; -yi-rep.&sp. ; ~oh-T)2 subj.) 
P3-i da'fi'- (da-p\. ; 'a-i obj. ; di-start from; -yi-rep.asp.) 

P4-i dafti*- (da-pl.; djiA subj.; 'a-i obj.; at-start from; -?/i-rep.asp.) 
-'a-c (inc.) (-'ac) two persons go 
-dd- (inc.) (-dd-l) one person goes 
-l-dg- (pres.) (-dpi) explode 
-goh (mora.) (-goh) plunge, bump, hit falling 
-ka*h (inc.) (-hah) plural persons go 
-yd-h (inc.) (-gd-l) one person goes 
4-ye-d (inc.) (4-yol) one runs 
4-x\ (mom.) (-l-x(-l) cause melting 
-tid* (mom.) (-tsj-l) hear 
4id (pres.) (4il) smoke; cause smoking 

di-. . . -l-tld'd (inc.) (4-tlil) light, kindle, cause to flame 

OAJi-over 'a-beyond. . . -dld-d (pres.) (-dial) sun shines on . . . (YM 52) 

a; . . . -T (inc.) repeatedly start . . .ing repeatedly . . . -yd-h (inc.) (-gd-l) one person goes . .-l-tfyh (inc.) (-l-tdf-l) sound 

3? . .-tli-d (inc.) (-tiil) move separate obj. forcefully; separate 

obj. fall< ozi-away). . . -tq-c (inc.) (-tqc) flip away< a*zi-away). . .-ka-d (inc.) (-kal) slap away 
#o-place. . ,4-tj'h (inc.) (4-tf-l) rain 

10,88g. di-yi-sb&rt from repetitive aspect si-perfective 

repeated starting from . . . ing took place 
. . . ing has repeatedly started . . . ing from 
. . . has repeatedly started . . . ing . . . from 

Prefix distent from to regular si-perfective forms of -yi-repetitive 
aspect with d instead of y initial (10.106d.) Note: 

206 NAVAHO GBAMMAK 10.88g.-10.89a. 

2 di-m- | ^^ start f rom . a ^.pf. . . n .% subj. ; -yi-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.) 


> (dji-4: subj. ; di-start from ; si-pf. ; -^-rep.asp. ; -wt-compl.) 

3-3 yidi-z- (yi-3 obj.; distort from; si-pf.; -t/t-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.) 
by 1 diyic- (dt-start from ; si-pi . ; -yi-rep.asp.; -wi-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 dt*«- (di-start from; $i-pf. ; -yi-rep.asp.; -nt-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

-6t; (-6ic) braid 

•yd (-gd-l) one person goes 

•goh (-goh) bump, plunge, hit falling 

-l-yod (-l-yol) one person runs 

•dzd (-dd-l) one person goes 

*dzf*z (-dzis) be tugged at, jerked 

Dl by 3 nixidvsdzi-z we were jerked (in car) . .-ti^ (-tSf'l) hear 

; . . . -l-tsfr'' (-l-tfyl) sound; cause to hear (YM 222) 

a;o-place. . . -/-$$■' (-l-ti'l) rain 

rro-place. . . -l-xdd (-l-xal) club a place 

10.89. dini- get stuck static 

... is stuck 

dini-be stuck is a compound prefix treated like ni-absolute ( 1 0. 97 . ) , 
the difference being that in the third persons di- absorbs -ni- to 
form the following. Otherwise di- is prefixed to the static prefixes : 

3 di~ (di-ni-) 

4 djidi- (dji-4: subj. ; di-ni-he stuck) 
i 'adi- ('a-i subj.; di-ni-be stuck) 

3-3 yidi- (yi-3 obj.; di-ni-be stuck) 

-ni-h (stat.) (-nih) hurt, be sore, injured (YM 158) 
•giz (stat.) (-gis) be crooked, twisted (YM 86) 
-yin (stat.) (-y\-l) be holy, supernatural 

blu blu be* 'ejdiyin sound blu blu makes one holy ( JS) 
•l-yo> (-l-yol) be fleet (YM 84) 
•l-zin (-l-zj-l) be held sacred 
-dzin (-dz%-l) be sacrilegious 

-taiz (-tais) shake, quiver, tremble from nervousness, fright 
•djd*d (stat.) be fleet 

-djo-l (-cbjol) beballike, round; stocky, "chunky" (WM) 
~tU ri (stat.) be wet 
•tlid (stat.) (-tlil) tremble from weakness, be overpowered 

'4-thus-xo-things. . .-l-tii-d (abs.) be normal (FH) 

Oe- xo- . . . -l-tsi-d (abs.) subsist on it (YM 221) 

Ovh m-end. . .-l-yo y (mom.) (-l-yol) get stuck running into ... (FII, 

dah- . . . -taiz shiver from cold (YM 230) 
td'lah . . . 4-t6he r be alone 
ni-. . ,-l-ye-d (pres., inc.) (4-yol) lose race (FH), be about to get stuck 

running (WM) 
OUe* . . . -ni'h (-nih) get angry on account of . . . (YM 168) 

10.89a. dini-get stuck continuative 

uniform . . . ing is halted 

. . . got stuck while . . . ing uniformly 

10.89a.-10.89c. PEEFIXES 207 

The continuative of di-ni-get stuck is treated like ni- uniform 
(10.98a.) with the present stem, that is, di- is prefixed to the regular 
m-uniform continuative. The following show the differences in the 
position of prefixes : 

4 djidini- (dji-k subj.; di-ni-get stuck) 
3-3 yidini- (yi-3 obj. ; di-ni-get stuck) 

-T (mom., pres.) get stuck . . .ing 
4-bah (pres.) (4-bah) be grayish 
-b\-h (pres.) (-bj-l) pi. animate obj. sit 
-l-gah (pres.) (-l-gah) be whitish, cream-colored 
-gic (pres.) (-gic) rub, be rubbed with (NT 418 : 20) 
-yic (pres.) (-yic) rumple, rub washing, shred inner bark (NT 278 : 22) 
4-yo" (mom.) (-l-yol) one person is a fast runner, one is fleet 
-l-tsoh (pres.) (4-tsoh) be yellowish, orange-colored (YM 231) 
4-jin (pres.) (4-ji'l) be blackish, dark brown (YM 106) 
-djd-d (pres.) be fleet, swift 

-l-tci-h (pres.) (4-tcih) be pink, reddish; vegetation is dried, brownish 
(NT 50:19) 

Vbeyond. . ,4-yo' (mom.) {-l-yol) be stuck (as car in mud, sand) 
(YM 84) 

'oil-suffer. . ,-dU-h (pres.) (-dle-l) be overcome with joy, cry incoher- 
ently with joy 

Oi-h 'a-beyond. . . -l-ye*d (pres.) (4-yol) one is stuck while running; car 
is stuck in . . . (YM 84) 

2d£-out-na-cust.-#o-things. . .4-nih (cust.) (4-nih) blunder cust. while 
relating story, imparting news; accidentally give away a secret 
(YM 154) 

10.89b. di-ni-get stuck yi-perfective 

uniform . . . ing has halted 

. . . has got stuck . . . ing uniformly 

The 2/i-perfective of di-ni-get stuck moving uniformly is like that 
of ?ii-uniform-yi-perfective, that is, di- is prefixed to the prefixes of 

-gij (-gic) be stuck crouching 
•gi'j (-gic) be rumpled by 
-yi'j (yic) rumple 

'a-beyond- -l-yod (4-yol) one gets stuck running (WM) 

*a/ ... -l-ni-'' (4-nih) get hand stuck in hole (WM) 
Oi-h . . . -l-yod (4-yol) car got stuck in . . . (YMG 65) 
Oi'h 'a-theme. . . -yq,-' (-yf-l) infect, eat into . . . 
yah'a-beyond. . . -dzd (-dd-l) one person goes in and stays 
2di-out-#o-things. . .-Z-ne' (4-nih) blunder while speaking (YM 155) 

10.89c. di-ni-get stuck inceptive 

. . . got stuck on the way 

di-ni-get stuck inceptive differs from di-wi-continuative (10.89b.) 
in that it combines with m-start for instead of with ni-uniform and 
is used with the inceptive instead of with the present (or momentary) 

208 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.89c.~10.89d. 

stem. The paradigm is given to show the differences in the combina- 
tions of prefixes: 

1 dinic- (di-ni-get stuck; nt-start for; -c-1 subj.) 

2 dinl- (di-ni-get stuck; m-start for; -n-2 subj.) 

3 de-- (di-ni-get stuck; m-start for) 

4 djide*- (dji-4: subj. ; di-ni-get stuck ; m-start for) 
Dl dini-d- {di-ni-get stuck; ni-start for; -i-d-T>l subj.) 
D2 dino-h- (di-ni-get stuck; m-start for; -oh-T>2 subj.) 
3-3 yide-- (yi-3 obj. ; di-ni-get stuck; m-start for) 

(3) by i bi'te-- (6i-[3] subj.; 'a-i ag.; di-ni-get stuck; m-start for) 

Oa- . . .-T (inc.) hand. . . to . . . 
Oa- . . . -*&-h (inc.) («'d*2) let it go, cancel debt, forgive, assign ... to ... , 

turn . . . over to ... , come to an agreement about . . . (FH) 
Oa- 'a-theme. . .-''a-h (inc.) (-'<W) permit . . . to . . . 
'q* . . . -tfrh (inc.) (-tf-l) open door and be unable to close it 
V. . .-ni-l (inc.) (-nil) take down bars of fence and be unable to get 

them back 
V . . M-h (inc.) (-U-1) open wire gate, or pair of doors or windows and be 

unable to close them 
Oe* Oa. . . -'a-h (inc.) (-'<H) give paper permit to . . . (FH) 
Oda 'a-beyond-di-get stuck- 'a-theme-m-start for . . .-'a-h (inc.)(-'d*Z) 

cork or lid is stuck in . . . 
to- Oa- . . . -*a-h (inc.) (-''dl) give in to ... in fight (YM3) 
to- Oa- *a-self . . . -ta-h (inc.) (-td-l) give self up in fight (YM 3) 
na*nic Oa- . . . -''a-h (inc.) (-'d-l) hire 
m-end. . . -£-M*s (inc.) (-Wis) take a step, step off distance (YM 104) 

m'-end -ta-h (inc.) (-td-l) save . . . 

nt-end. . . -l-ni-h (inc.) (-l-nih) place hands (WM) 

niki-edge. . *-l-'£-8 (inc.) (-l-'is) step down onto surface 

nisi- . . . -ge-h (inc.) (-goh) kneel (YM 89) 

Oya di-get stuck-'a-theme-m-start for . . . -ta-h (-td-l) make . . . 

xa-0-. . .-l-'i'h (inc.) (-l-'i'l) uncover deception, be caught in the act 

of . . . (YM 102) 
Odjd-tah . . . -l-ta-l (inc.) (4-tal) trip with the foot 
tdi-out. . . -l-dlo-h (inc.) (-l-dloh) start to smile (FH) 
^di-out-na-back-'a-theme. . ,-l-dla-d (inc.) (-l-dlal) sun breaks out of 

clouds (YM 52) 
01 'aa?a-(< 'a#a*-for each other) di-get stuck-'a-theme-wi-start for 
. . ,-ta-h (inc.) (-td*l) make agreement, treaty (YM 190) * 

10.89d. di-ni-get stuck starting for ni-perfeotive 

. . . ing has been stuck 

. . . ing has got stuck . . . ing to goal 

When di-ni-get stuck is prefixed to the regular forms of m-per- 
fective (10,99a.) the results are similar to prefixing di- to those 
forms with the following changes due to contraction : 

2 di-ni- (di-ni-get stuck; m-pf.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

4 djidini- (dji-4 subj. ; di-ni-get stuck ; m-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

3-3 yidini- (yi-3 obj.; di-ni-get stuck; m-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

by 3 de-- (di-ni-get stuck; m-pf.; -ni-compl. ; -yi-% ag.) 

•l-ni-' (-l-nih) have hands in position (FH) 

10.89d.-10.89f. prefixes 209 

Oa- . . .-'# (S&-1) permit ... to . . ., turn over to . . . , forget or cancel 

debt, decide in . . . 's favor, call it even (YM 3, FH) 

3-3 yeidind'$ he cancelled his debt (FH) 
Oa- ni-(<. nd-back) . . . -T (pf.) give . . . back to . . . 
'dd-a- . . . -fy (-td-l) adopt child (YMG 89) 
V . . . T (pf.) open . . . (YM 28) 
Oda di-stuck-'a-theme. . . -*# (~'d-l) lid, cork is stuck (is in and won't 

come out) 
Odd- . . . - T (pf.) put lid, cork, obj. in opening 
to- Oa- *d-self . . . -tq, (-td-l) give (self) up to in fight (YM 191) 
n-(< na-about) . . . -l~tcid (-l-tcil) move hand quickly, do hand trembling 

rurnic Oa- . . . -'# (^d-l) hire (YM 3) 

ni-end. . . -Z-'e*z (-Wis) take a step, step off distance (YM 104) 
nmd 'd-self . . . -tq, (-td-l) risk life for . . . (YM 192) 
niki-. . .-l-'e-z (-Wis) step down onto surface (YMG 89, YM 104) 
ni-. . .-'$ (-'d-l) decide on . . . 

Oya di-get stuck-'a-theme. . . -t4 (-td-l) force ... to give in (YM 191) 
Odjd-tah . . . -l-td-l (-l-tal) trip . . . with foot (YM 186) 
£&•-(< t6i-out-nd-ba,ck)di-get stuck-'a-theme. . ,-l-dld'd (-l-dlal) sun 

breaks out of clouds (YM 52) 
tdi-out. . .-l-dlo' (-l-dloh) baby smiles the first time (YM 54) 
01 *axa-(<C 'a#-together-a- for)di-get stuck-'a-theme. . .-#£ (-td-l) make 

agreement, treaty (YM 190) 

10.89e. di-ni-get stuck si-perfective 

be stuck (in trouble) after having . . .ed 

The order of prefixes for di-ni-get stuck si-perfective is di-si-ni-, 
and the forms are like those of ni-uniform $i~perfective (10.98c), 
that is, di- is prefixed to m-uniform si-perfective. Note: 

by 1 dinic- (di-get stuck; ni-uni.; »i-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 dtyini- (di-get stuck; ni-uni.; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -n-2 ag.) 
by 3 yidine^s- (di-get stuck ; ni-uni. ; ai-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 

by 4 djidine-8- (dji-4: ag. ; di-get stuck; ni-uni. ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 


•fy* (-ty-l) be stolen 

-l-yi (-l-yi-l) be responsible for a killing 

'a^i -suffering. . .-dlf-' (-dle-l) be overcome, cry, talk incoherently for 

joy, be unable to control oneself (YM 53) 
n<z-about-0-di-get stuck-'a-theme-ni-uni. . . -l-ya-l (-l-yal) be beaten up, 

beat up . . . 
xa-out. . . -dzi^ (-dzih) get stuck while speaking (YM 58) 

10.89L di-ni-get stuck continuative cessative 

Verbs of color and a few others have the cessative conjugations 
(10.105b, 10.105c.) if they mean that the color is from outside the 
subject, for example, 'aya*' yvtcxrh "yarn is getting red (from 
dye)." If, however, the change of state takes place from within 
di-wi-get stuck is used with the present stem and the cessative 
forms of the type dinv-. This results in the third person form di*-, 
whereas the inceptive cessative, meaning "change is coming about 

210 KAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.89f.-10.89i. 

through outside agency," has the third person dini 1 -. Compare tnS 
following : 

di'tcxi-h it is becoming red (as flower, or vegetation browning from 

dini-tcxi'h it is becoming rusty (from elements) 
di-taoh it is becoming yellow (as flower, vegetation) 
dini-tsoh it is being scorched (by fire, iron) 
dini'tlo-h it (rope) is slackening; coming to a point of stability 
dini'tii'C it is getting wet 
dini'ltti-c he is dampening, soaking it 

10.89g. dini-get stuck inceptive cessative 

The inceptive cessative forms of di-ni-get stuck are of the form 
dinv- < di-ni-yt-cessative. Or di- is prefixed to the regular inceptive 
cessative forms of m-uniform (10.98d.). Note: 

3 dini*- {di-get stuck; ni-uni.; yi-cess.) 

4 djidini-- (dji-4 subj,; di-get stuck; wi-uni.; yi-ceBS.) 
3-3 yidini'- (yi~% obj.; di-get stuck; ni-uni.; 3/i-cess.) 

•l-tsxoh (-l-tsxoh) scorch 

•l-tlo-h (-l-tlo-l) loosen, slacken (YM 217) 

-l-tli'C (-l-tiic) dampen, soak (YM 212) 

nd-cust.. . ,-l-tlo-h (oust.) (-1-116*1) loosen, slacken cust. (YM 217) 
w-. . .-tcxi-h (-tcxih) rust (YM 34) 

10.89h. di-ni-get stuck perfective cessative 

In the perfective cessative di-ni-get stuck is expressed by prefix- 
ing di- to the regular perfective cessative forms (10.98e.) with n 
instead of y initial, and the following forms show the additional 
effect of ni- of di-ni- : 

2 dinini- (di-ni-get stuck; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -yi-cess.) 
3-3 yidini'- (j/t-3 obj.; di-ni-get stuck; yt-prog. ; -yi-cess.) 
(3) by i bi'fini'- (bi- [3] subj.; 'a-i ag.; di-ni-get stuck; yt-prog.; -yi-cess.) 

-l-taxoi (-l-tsxoh) scorch 

•l-tid-' (-l-tlo-l) loosen, slacken (YM 217) 

-l-tk-j (-l-ttic) dye light blue (the wrong shade) 

n- . . . -tcxi^ (-tcxih) rust (YM 52) 

10.89L di-ni-ni-stuck at the end wi-perfective 

... is stuck at the end and unable to return to previous position 

di-ni-get stuck may be combined with wi-end-m-perf ective ; tb 
order — dfc-m-end-m-perfective — shows that di- is pre-paradigmati< 
The resulting forms are as if di- were prefixed to the m-perfecti\ 
of wt-end-m-perfective (10.100b.), the following differences heir 
due to position of the prefixes : 

by 4 -jdine'- (dji-4 ag. ; di-get stuck; m-end; nt-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 
3 by 3 -yidine*- (yi-3 subj.; di-get stuck; ni-end; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

10.89i.-10.89l. prefixes 211 

Oa* ni-end . . . -dzd (-dd'l) one person is stuck doing — 
'q* . . . T (pf.) get stuck in opening 

ni-end. . . -fd-j (-tac) two persons are stuck 
ni-end. . . -kai (-kah) pi. persons are stuck 
ni-end. . . -dzd (-dd*l) one person is stuck 
ni-end. . . -l-dlo*j (-l-dloc) animal got stuck trotting 

10.89 J. di-si-start harming progressive 

un- . . . ing is taking place progressively 
... is un- . . . ing progressively 
... is un- . . . ing . . . progressively 

In the progressive di-start from combines with si-harm to result 
in forms of the pattern diyvc- (10.118b.) 

not-about-'d-self-sco-place. . .-l-ao two persons loiter (YM 51) 
na-about-'d-self-iro-place. . .-l-kah pi. persons loiter (YM 51) 
na-about-'a-self-aso-place. . .-dla-l one person loiters (YM 51) 

10.89k, di-si-start un- . . . continuative 

un- . . . ing is starting 
... is starting to un- . . . 
... is starting to un- ... it 

di-start is prefixed to si-harm continuative (10.118c.) with the 
following results : 

1 di-c- (di-start; si-harm; ^i-cont. ; -c-1 subj.) 

diyi- I (^' start J si-harm; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 di-- (di-start; si-harm; yi-cont.) 

4 djidi-- (cty'i-4 subj.; di-start; ai-haxm; yi-cont.) 
Dl diyi-d- (di-start; ai-harm; yi-cont.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 diyoh- (di-stajrt; ^-harm; yi-cont.; -0&-D2 subj.) 
3-3 yidi-- (yi-3 obj.; di-start; ai-harm; yi-cont.) 

P3-3 dayidi-- (rfa-pl.; yi-3 obj . ; di-start ; si-harm; yi-cont.) 

-gis (pres.) (-gis) be crazy 

'd-self . . . -l-yi (pres.) (-l-yi-l) kill self, commit suicide 

'd-self-n-(< nd-cust.). . ,-l-yi-h (cust.) (4-y6-l) commit suicide oust. 

(YM 78) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . . -gis (pres.) (-gis) have no ambition for . . . 
f6- ... -gis (pres.) (-gis) be without ambition, stupid, idiotic 
na-about-'d-self-a;o-place. . .-l-'ct'C (pres.) (-l-'ac) two persons loiter 
na-about-'d-self-^o-place. . .-kaih (pres.) (-kah) pi. persons loiter 
ni-(< na-aboutjnd-cust.-'d-self-ao-place. . .-dla-h (cust.) (-dla-l) one 

person loiters (YM 51) 

10.891. di-si-start un- . . . si-perfective 

un- . . . ing has taken place 
. . . has un- . . . ed 
. . . has un- . . . ed ... 

When si-un-si-perfective (10.118d.) is preceded by a prefix (in 
this case di-) the initial of the si-perfective changes to y: 

15 Eelohard 

212 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.89l.-10.8&n. 

by 1 diyic- (dt-start; $i-un- ; fli-pf, ; -ni-compl, ; -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 diyini- (di-start ; ai-xm- ; si-pf . ; -ni-compl. ; -n-2 ag.) 

by 3 diye'S- (dt-start; *i-un-; $i-pf.; -ni-compl.; -^i-3 ag.) 

by Dl diye-d- (dt-start; «i-un-; *i-pf.; -ni-compl. ; -i*d-Dl ag.) 

by D2 diyo*h- (dt-start; ai-un-; #i-pf. ; -ni-compl.; -o/&-D2 ag.) 

'ddt-self . . . 4-yi (-l-yfrl) commit suicide; kill self (YM 78) 
na-about-'ti-self-tfo-place. . .-/-'a-; (-l-'ac) two persons loiter, each one 

loiters (YM 51) 
na-about-'d-self-aso-place. . .-l-kai (4-kah) pi. persons loiter 
na-about-'d-self-#o-place. . . -dld- J (-dld-l) one person loiters 

10.89m. -di-81-emit un- . . . continuative 

In combination with nd-xi-, -di- with si-un- seems to have an 
inflective prefix which has not been determined (cp. di-ai-start from 
un-. . . 10.89k., and dini-get stuck inceptive 10.89c.) This unknown 
prefix may be (-xi-) t an inflective with xi- (10.115.). If there is no 
inflective prefix, this paradigm illustrates the difference between 
dt-start from and di-emit, which has not been noted in any other 

1 -de-c- 

2 -de- 

3 -diye-- 

4 -jdiye-- 1 
-;de-- J 

Dl -de-d- 
D2 -do-h- 
3-3 yidiye*- 
(3) by i -bi'tiye-- 

nd-xi-, . . T (inc.) turn over (YM 8) 

nd-xi-, . .-l-yal (mom.) (4-yal) roll over (YM 76) 

nd-xi-. . ,4-tSi-d (inc.) (4-tiil) capsize (YM 225) 

nd-xi- . . . -djic (inc.) {-djjc) turn body over (YM 107) 

nd-back-nd-a?i-. . . T (inc.) turn back over, turn . . . back to where it 

was (FH, WM) 
ni-nd-xi-, . . T (cust.) turn . . . over cust. 
ni-nd-xi-. . ,-1-tH* (cust.) (4-tiil) capsize cust. (YM 225) 
ni-nd-xi-. . .dj{c (cust.) (-djic) turn body over cust. (YM 107) 

10.89n. -di-$i-emit un- . . . $t-perfective 

The elements that enter into the conjugation of the type nd-xi- 
di-sisi-jyf. allow contraction with di- as compared with di-si-si-pf . 

1 -di- 

2 -dl-ni- 

3 -diyi-- 

4 -dziyfr- 
Dl -de-d- 
D2 -do- 
3-3 -yidiyi*- 

by 1 -die- 

10.89n.-10.90a. PREFIXES 213 

by 3 -des- 
by 4 -jde'8-\ 
-zdc- J 
(3) by i -bi'fiye'- 

Oa- n- . . . -dzd (-dd-l) one person lay in ambush (NT 98 : 5) 

nd-bevck-nd-xi- . . . -T (pf.) turn . . . back to original position (WM, FH) 

nd-xi~. . . T (pf.) turn . . . over 

nd-xi- . . . -l-yal (-l-yal) person turns, rolls over 

xd--(< xa-out-nd-back)^- . . . -ne*z (-nes) be a long roll (NT 404 : 23) 

10.90. d^-start against future 

. . . will start . . . ing against 

will start . . .ing . . . against 

. . . will start . . . ing . . . against . . . 

The prefix di- seems to be a compound, perhaps of cK-start from- 
nd-against. The inflective (nd-) affects the future forms as follows: 

1 -de-c- (dt-fut.; [na-]; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 -di-- (di-fut.; [nd]; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 -dd-- (di-fut. ; [wa-]; yi-prog.) 

4 -jdd-- (dji-4: subj. ; di-fut, ; [nd-] ; yi-pvog.) 
DI -di-d- (di-fut.; {nd-]; yi-prog.; -i*d-Dl subj.) 
D2 -dd*h- (di-fut. ; [nd-]; yt-prog.; -oA-D2 subj.) 
3-3 -yidd*- (yi-3 obj.; dt-fut. ; [nd-]; yi-prog.) 

Oa* ib-. . .-t\*l report, discuss about . . ., take action for . . ., annoy, 

bother, molest (YM 202) 
'dd-self-a* it- . . . -t\*l become bashful, devote oneself to completely 
Oi-(<i O-nd-against) -kil ask ... about ..., ask ... to let ... 

have ... (FH) 

3-3 yi'dd-hit he will ask him about it 

3-i bVi-dd'kil he will ask him about something 
di- . . . -'ft look at, look (YMG 99) 
no-about-'i-(<' 'a-i-nd-against) . . . -l-kil inquire about, ask questions 

about ... (YM119) 

yi-rec.ef. . . . -kil ask, beg for, request . . . (YM 119) 

yi-doubtful destination. . . -l-tipl listen to . . . (YM 222) 
xd-di-. . .-'fi look for (YM 100) 

10.90a. dt-start against continuative 

. . .ing against is starting 
... is starting to . . . against 
... is starting to ... it against 
... is starting to ... it against . . . 

di- seems to be composed of dt-start from and an inflective 
prefix, probably (nd-) against. I shall analyze these forms on this 
basis although the meaning is very doubtful. 

(dt-start; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

(di-start; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 


(d/i-4 subj. ; dt-start; [nd-]) 

fa-i subj.; di-start; [nd-]) 

(di-start; [nd-]; -id-Dl subj.) 














£14 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10,90a-. 10.90b. 

D2 ~d6h- (dt-start; [nd-] j -oh-T>2 subj.) 

3-3 yidi- (^-3 obj.; di-start; [nd-]) 

by Dl -de'd- (di-start; [nd-]; -i-d-Dl ag.) 

(3) by i -bi'ti- (bi-[3\ subj.; 'a-iag.; di-start; [nd-]) 

Od '*-(< 'd-self-nd-against) . . . -l-kid (pres.) (-l-kil) ask for girl in 

0!-(< O-nd-against). . .-l-nih (mom., pres.) (4-nih) feel, examine by 

feeling (YM 156) 
Oi-(K O-nd-against). . .-Id* (mom.) (-kit) ask for . . . 
Ot-(< O-nd-against). . .-Ud (pres.) (4il) be polished, filled out, fat, full 

P4 bida/jdilid they(4) are fat 

Otah n-(< nd-cust.)*d-theme. . ,-ji-h (cust.) (-ji-l) call roll (YM 236) 

mfci-(< nt&i-touch-nd-against) . . ,-l-tal (mom.) (-l-tal) stamp feet 

ya-tilt-«-'a-theme. . .- y a-h (inc.) (-'d-l) permit, allow, yield to, bow to 

yd- . . . -l-Wh (inc.) (-l-tih) start to speak up (FH) 

xd-. . .-rifrh (pres.) (-lifrl) dress 

&--(< -a-beyond) . . . -l-tci (pres.) (-l-tci-l) beat about the bush, lick . . . 's 

boots, flatter to get something (YM 36) 

4 liftiltci he(4) is licking . . . 's boots 

10.90b. efo'-start against m-perfective 

. . . has started against 

. . . has started to . . . against 

The prefixes of efe'-start against in the m-perfective have the order 
di-ni-(n&~) which combine with the following results: 

(d£-start; m-pf.; -c-1 subj.; [nd-]) 
(dt-start ; m-pf. ; -n-2 subj. ; [nd-]) 
(dt-start; m-pf. ; [nd-]) 
(dji-4: subj . ; dt-start ; m-pf. ; [nd-]) 

(di-start; m-pf.; [nd-]; -i-d-T>\ subj.) 

(d^-start ; ni-pf. ; -oh-D2 subj . ; [nd-]) 
(yi-3 obj.; dvstart; m-pf.; [nd-]) 
(dr-start; m-pf.; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 
(6i-[3] subj.; 'a-i ag.; dt-start; m-pf. ; [nd-]) 

look for (YM 100; EW 90:11) 
dig with implement 
-dp* {-dji-l) name is mentioned (FH) 

Oi-(K O-nd-against). . ,-tV (-tih) concern . . . (YM 199) 

Oi-(K O-nd-against). . ,-tcid (-tcil) reach for with hand and miss; just 

graze with hand 
na-about-'£-(< 'o-i-j/i-rec.ef.) . . .-l-kid (-l-kti) inquire, ask about 

(YM 119) 
yi-rec.ef. . . . -l-ttf (-l-tg-l) be smooth, slippery; slip 
xa-out. . . -bi'd {-bt-l) fill, get full (YM 28) 
xa-oxrt* . . -l-bi'd {-l-bpl) fill, cause fiUing up (YM 28) 
xa-na- . . .-l-dd-z (-l-das) overcome . ... (BS) 
xd- . . . -'$•' (-'f I) look for . . . (YM 100) 

Qz&* . . . -'<£ {-'a-i) hang round object around . . . 's neck (EW 1 10 : 5) 
0^d-irritiable-'i-(< *a-i-nd-against) . . .-dji y {-dji-l) speak war langu; 

speak irritably against . . . (EW 152: 18) 

1 di-- 

2 di-ni- 

3 di- 

4 djide- 


Dl di-d- 



D2 d6- 

3-3 yidi-- 

by 1 d&'C- 

(3) by i Wte- 

-'<•' ("'f I) 


-l-yi-d (-/-: 


-l-xf- 9 (-U 


10.90c-10;91. PREFIXES 215 

10.90c. d^-start against si-perfective 

. . . has started to . . . against 

(W-start against has si-{nd-) perfective, the order being di-si-(n&-) 
and resulting as follows : 

1 di- (d*-start; s^-pf. ; -c-1 subj.; -[nd-]) 

2 dini- (c^-atart; ai-pf. ; -n-2 subj.; [nd-]) 

3 di'Z- (di-st&rt; st-pf.; [nd-]) 

4 dzidfrz- {dji-4: subj. ; di-start ; st-pf. ; [nd-]) 
DI di-d- (dt-start; #i-pf. ; [nd-]; -id-Dl subj.) 
3-3 yidi-z- {yi-3 obj. ; di-start ; si-pf. ; [nd-]) 

by 1 die- (dt-start; si-ipf. ; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

-Vd (abs.) hold . . . horizontal (YM 11) 
-ti m> (-^H) be seen, be visible 

Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . . -l-ni^ (4-nih) feel, rub with fingers, examine by 

feeling (YM 156) 
nd*-again. . . -dzd (-dd*l) one person starts again 
OUe . . . -l-yiz {-l-yis) be startled on account of . . . (YM 80) 
#£-(< #t-over-nd-against) . . . -l-jo-j (-l-joc) sit with legs extended 
dzi-aw&y . . . -J-'e-z (-l-'ia) leap after and miss 
te£-uncertain. . . -yiz (-yis) be startled, frightened (FH) 

10.91 . dk'-m'-prolongative 

The prolongative is a compound prefix, each of whose parts, di- 
and ni- may be separated by other prefixes which come between 
them. The several forms indicate that there is a choice, perhaps a 
conflict, in the position of the prefixes, especially of the fourth 
person and the compounds with Vindefinite pronoun in all aspects. 
AB puts Vindef inite pronoun before dini- ; WM inserts it between 
the prefixes with forms of the type dirii-. 

The prolongative is here treated like the pattern of other com- 
pound prefixes: di- is considered the prefix of motion or action, ni- 
ls the corresponding inflective. 

WM frequently gives ni-uniform for the continuative, for which 
he has dini-futme, but doubtless this is inconsistent. I have found 
dini- as the prolongative continuative of many verbs, although it is 
obvious that it and m-uniform have almost the same meaning. 

di-ni- prolongative progressive and future 

. . . ing will be prolonged 
. . . will . . . prolongatively 
. . . will ... it prolongatively 

1 dinfrc- ( di-ni -prol. ; t^-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 dini-- (di-ni-jyrol. ; yi-prog. ; -n-2 subj.) 

3 dinS-- (di-ni-proh; yi-jprog.) 

4 djidino-A , ,.. . , . „ , 

dijnd-- ) ( dp ' 4 8ubj ' ; rfl ' m -P ro1 ' ; 2^-prog.) 
i 'adind*- "I . 

dirid- f ( °" 1 8ub J' ; di-m-prol. ; ^-prog.) 

216 STAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.91.-10.91a. 

Dl dini-d- (dl-nt-prol. ; yi-prog.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 dind-h- (di-ni-prol. ; j/t-prog.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

Plural: prefix da-pl. to dual forms. 

3-3 yidind-- (yi-S obj.; di-ni-prol.; t/t-prog.) 

,, ,^ # I ( a ~ l °^J ,; dt-nt-prol.; t^-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

d'rt'- ' f C 06 ^ °^i- > di-ni-prol. ; yi-prog. ; -w-2 subj.) 
3-i Wind-- ('a-i obj.; di-ni-prol.; yi-prog.) 

,, .JL r ' > ('a-i obj. ; di-prol. ; d/t-4 subj. ; -ni-prol. ; t/t-prog.) 

1 dajdirid'-] W^-P 1 - 'a-i obj. ;d/t-4 subj ;di-ni-prol.; yi-prog.) 
(3) by i 6i'#nd-- (fo- [3] subj.; 'a-i ag.; di-ni-prol. ; t/i-prog.) 

10.91a. <fo'-m'-prolongative continuative 

. . . ing is taking place prolongatively 
. . . is . . . ing prolongatively 
. . . is . . . ing . . . prolongatively 

1 dinic- (di-ni-prol.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 dini- (di-ni-prol. ; -n-2 subj.) 

3 dini- (rfi-wi-prol.) 

dijnt'\ W*-4«abj.;di-n<-proL) 

i "adini- \ . , 

rf^i- J ^ "- 1 sub J- J aVm-prol.) 

Dl dini-d- (di-ni-prol.; -vd-Dl subj.) 
D2 dinoh- (di-wi-prol.; -0&-D2 subj.) 

Plural : prefix da-pl. to regular dual forms and note : 

P4 dajdini- (aa-pl.; dji-4 subj.; di-ni-prol.) 

3-3 yidini- (yi-3 obj.; di-ni-prol.) 

P3-3 daytdiwi- (cfo-pL; yt-3 obj.; di-ni-prol.) 
4-i 'ajditii' 1 

1 dajdiHi- } (^"P 1 ^ ^"i obj.; d/t-4 subj.; di-nf-prol.) 
by 3 e^-- (di-ni-prol.; -yi-3 ag.) 

(3) by i bi'tini' (bi- [3] subj.; 'a-i ag.; di-r»i-prol.) 

Oa* w-(< na-cust.) . . . -l^q'h (cust.) (-l-'q-l) water cust. seeks its level 
Oi-{< O-nd-against) . . .-l-tci-d (pres.) (4-tcil) barely touch; hand is 

caused to move against. . . (FH) 
**-. ..-t-'i-h (inc.) (-'*•*) hide (YM 101) 

3-3 nUdinirj-h he is hiding it 
wa-cust. . .-yo' (cust.) (-yoi) drive several (YM 233) 
xd-. . .-T (inc.) carry too far (YM 8) 

xo- . . . -'o& (mom.) (-'ah) distract, lead one astray, lead one on 
xo-. . .Sa-h (inc.) (-'ah) distract, lead one, astray (FH) 
xo- . . . -tats (inc.) (-tsis) flame dies out 
*i-harm. . . -gic (mom.) (-gic) epidemic is spreading 
#i-harm. . . -gfrc (inc.) (-gic) epidemic is starting 
01 na-about-'a#£-(< 'aa^-together-na-against)d£-prol.-3-(< cfei-away) 

ni-prol -1-tSin (pres.) (-l-tfyl) box with . . . 

i- 1 

, j- (di-prol. ; si-pL ; -c-1 subj. ; -ni-prol.) 

10.91b.-10.91c, PREFIXES 217 

10.91b. dt'-ntf-prolongative si-perfective 

prolongative . . .ing has taken place 
. . . has . . . ed prolongatively 
. . . has . . . ed ... prolongatively 

In the si-perfeotive the order of prefixes is di-si-ni- with the 
following results : 

1 dlni- 

2 dinlni- } < di -P roL 5 ^-P f ' ; * n " 2 8ub J' ; -«*-PW>l-) 

3 din&'- (di-prol.; st-pf.; -ni-prol.) 

4 dzidine-- 1 

dzidinfrz- \ (dji-i subj.; di-prol.; M-pf.; -ni-prol.) 

d'ri*- I (' * isu hj«;^-P ro l*;«**P f -; -ni-prol.) 
,, \ , | (di-prol.; M-pf.; -ni-prol. ; -t*d-Dl subj.) 

disin6-\ (^-prol.; at-pf.; -o£-D2 subj.; -ni-prol.) 
3-3 din^-z- (di-prol.; yv3 obj.; *t-pf.; -ni-prol.) 

dlzdm-z-f < °- x obj.; <fo-prol.; »-pf.; -n*-prol.) 
P4-i daftini-z- (da-pl.; Vi obj.; djiA subj.; di-prol.; s£-pf.; -ni-prol.) 
by 1 dinic- (di-prol.; ai-pf.; -ni-prol.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 yidini'8- (di-prol. ; at-pf. ; -ni-prol. ; -yi-3 ag.) 

bidm-l'-} (U ~ [3] sub ^ ; '*** ag ' ; di -P roL ; **-P f - ; -^-P ro1 -) 

Oi-(K O-nd-against). . ,-l-y$c {-l-y$c) think one sees. . . 

«-. . .-*-'f (-l-'i-l) hide (YM 102) 

«- . . . -i'd'j (-foe) two persons become exhausted while moving prol. 

*h- . . . -gr^*' (-<$•/) be disgusted with killings 

>fc- . . . -Am (-fcafe) pi. persons become exhausted while going 

ik- . . . -dza (-d<£*2) one person becomes exhausted while going 

%a~. . .-«$•' (-to-/) search, hunt f or . . . (YM 184) 

xa-xo- . . . -'$ (-'aA) distract, lead one on 

10.91c. oK-ra'-prolongative inceptive cessative 

start to pause in prolonged — ing 

. . . starts to pause . . . ing prolongatively 

. . . starts to pause . . . ing . . . prolongatively 

Prefix <fo'-n£-prolongative to regular forms of the inceptive 
cessative (10.105b.) with the following results : 

1 dini'C- (di-ni-prol.; -#i-cess.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 dini*- (di-ni-prol. ; -yt-cess. ; -n-2 subj.) 

3 dint*- (di-ni-prol.; -y^-cess.) 

4 dijni*- (di-prol. ; dji-i subj. ; -ni-prol.; -yt-cess.) 
Dl dini'd- (di-ni-prol. ; -j/i-cess.; -fd-Dl subj.) 

D2 dind-h- (di-ni-prol.; -yi-cess.; -oft-D2 subj.) 

'axi-(< 'a#i-together-n<S-against) . . .-*$ (-864) adhesion (medical); it ia 
caused to grow together (YM 14) 

218 NAVAH0 GRAMMAR 10.91c.-10.92. 

dah-nd-cvmt. -xo -plaoe . . .-l-tca? (cust.) (44cal) cust. loosen, spade ground 

(YM 32) 
da-(<. dah-)xo-j>\&ce . . .~l-tcd'd (inc.) (-l-tcal) loosen ground, spade 

0-ni-(< nd-cust.) . . . -td*h (cust.) (-td-l) lean head against cust. (YM 191) 

10.91d. dt-m-prolongative perfective cessative 

prolongative . . . ing has paused 

. . . has paused . . . ing prolongatively 

. . . has paused . . .ing . . . prolongatively 

The prolongative perfective cessative forms are like those of the 
inceptive cessative (10.105c.) except: 

1 dint-- (di-ni-prol.; -c-1 subj.; -yi-ce&&.) 

2 dinini- (di-ni-prol.; -n-2 subj.; -yi-cess.) 
D2 dind'- (di-ni-prol.; -oh-T>2 subj.; -yi-cess.) 

by 1 dini'C- (di -ni -pr ol. ; -yi-cess. ; -c-1 ag.) 
by D2 dind-h- (di -ni -pr ol. ; -yi-cess. ; -oh-*D2 ag.) 

0i-(< O-nd-against). . .-l-'4 (-l-'&'l) hold head against . . . 
dah- . . . 4-ya'j (4-yac) fry bread, make sopaipillas 
da-(K dah-)xo- . . . -l-tcct'd (4-tcal) loosen ground, spade (YM 32) 
n- . . . -fa (-td-l) pause in making speech (YM 190) 

10.91e. cfc'-st-m-prolongatively un- . . . continuative 

un- . . .ing is taking place prolongatively 
... is un- . . . ing prolongatively 
... is un- . . . ing . . . prolongatively 

1 d&*c- (di-prol.; si-un-; -ni-prol.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 dini- (di-prol. ; si-un-; -ni-prol.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 d&'Z- (di-prol.; si-un-; -ni-prol.) 

4 dzidi-z- (dji-4: subj.; rfi-prol.; si-un-; -ni-prol.) 
Dl de-d- (di-prol.; si-un-; -ni-prol.; -i*d-Dl subj.) 

A*<} f (di-prol.; si-un-; -ni-prol.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

Plural : prefix da-pl. to dual forms and note: 

P4 dazdi'Z- (da-jA.; dji-4 subj.; di-prol.; si-un-; -wi-prol.) 
3-3 yidfrz- (s/i-3 obj. ; rfi-prol. ; si-un- ; -ni-prol.) 

-'f"' (- I'O look; have eyes open; test the truth (FH) 

-tdak (-tdah) hold mouth open, make . . . open mouth (YM 38, FH) 

'axa-. . ,4-djq' (pres.) (4-djq) be in position with legs drawn up 

(YM 105, FH) 
*dxo- . . . -l-z&s (pres.) (4-zih) be motionless (YM 240, FH) 
ntai- . . . -go* (pres.) (-goh) be in kneeling position, kneel (YM 89) 
Ual . . . 4-ja* (pres.) (4-jah) have weapon cocked, be ever ready 
Ozd Hi- (<#i-over-nd-against). . .-16* (pres.) (4oh) strangle with rope 

(YM 137) 

10,92. na-about, here and there, at random 


The two prefixes under this heading are conjugated the same way. 
wa-about, here and there, at random, is a very general prefix, used 

10.92. PREFIXES 219 

in the future, where it is prefixed to the regular future forms (10.87.), 
sometimes being shortened to n-. In the continuative na-about 
enters into the continuative (present) conjugation, being treated 
exactly as da-down (10.85.) with n instead of d initial. Similarly, it 
takes si-perfective with n instead of d initial. 

na-down differs from da-down mainly in meaning and usage, na- 
down indicates motion through a longer distance than da-down 
which signifies position, action or motion "somewhat lower than 
previously." wa-down is used with any of the continuative stems- 
momentary, present or inceptive, and with yi-perfective. More 
restricted in usage than wa-about, w^-down is used mainly with 
verbs of falling, dropping, and the like. 

Since both prefixes are used extensively, only a few stems are 
given in the following paradigms, particularly to illustrate the 
difference in the type of stems which distinguish the meanings. 

Stems used with na-about continuative: 

• T (pres.) carry; move . . . about 

-Z-V (pres.) (-l-'a-l) take orders, act as helper, run errands (YM 9) 

-Vc (pres.) (-'ac) two persons take a trip 

•Wiz (pres.) (-l-Hs) walk about quietly; feet are caused to move about 

-hi (pres.) (-be-l) person bathes, swims about 

-l-de-h (pres.) (-l-dah) group of people goes on a trip; group causes 

moving about^ 
>kai (pres.) (-hah) ■ plural persons go on a trip ; pi. persons move about 
-yah (pres.) (-ga'l) one person goes on a trip ; one person moves about 
-l-tcid (pres.) (-l-tcil) gesture, move hand about 

dak-. . .-l-tal (pres.) (4-tal) heart beats 

Oka reach for na'a-i- . . . -gij (pres.) (-gic) probe, search for . . . (as doctoi 

Stems used with na-down continuative : 

• T (pres.) drop . . . obj. 

-*d'd (inc.) (-Vrf) drop fabriclike obj. 

-l-dd-8 (pres.) (-l-das) heavy mass falls 

-de'l (inc.) (-dil) ropelike obj. falls 

-l-tin (pres.) (-i-tf-l) drop (as rain, hail, dust) 

-J-fe* (inc.) (-l-te-l) drop sticklike obj. 

-nil (mom.) (-nil) sprinkle water {YM 168) 

•kps (inc.) (-k$s) stick falls (YM 122) 

•yd-h (inc.) (-gd-l) one person moves down 

-l-x^c (inc.) (-l-x§c) viscid substance falls 

Stems used with na-down-j/t-perfective (10.85a.) : 
-'ah (-W) fabriclike obj. falls; drop fabriclike obj. (YM 16) 
-'a (abs.) extend, project downward (YM 11) 
-l-dd-z (-l-das) mass falls (YM 46) 
-did (-dil) ropelike obj. darts downward (YM 49) 
•l-di-l (-l-dil) drop ropelike obj. 
•nil (-nil) drop several obj. (YM 168) 
-yd (-gd-l) one person goes, walks down 
~k$-z (-k$s) slender, stiff obj. falls 
•l-xpj (-l-x$c) viscid substance, mass falls 

220 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.92.-10.93b. 

4-tSid (4-tMl) bulky obj. falls 

-l-djo'l (-l-djol) brushy, fluffy substance falls 

Stems used with no-about-si-perfective (10.85b.) : 

44e* (4-fol) carry sticklike obj. ; sticklike-obj.-is-caused-to-move-about 

-nil (-nil) sprinkle; small objects move about (YM 168) 

-l-djq' (-l-djq?) move about stamping feet 

-l-tcid (4-tcil) gesture, do "motion-in-the-hand" (cer.); cause-hand -to 

move -about 
-tdq-' (46q'h) design, embroider 

10.93* wa-back, in a circle, arc, cycle 

nd--bs>ck should be carefully differentiated from na-again, for 
which it is sometimes substituted, and with which it may be com- 
bined to form ndnd-ba,ck again, nd- has two primary meanings: 
''back" and "in a circle, arc, or cycle," These meanings are not dis- 
tinguished by form although they may go with different selections 
of stems and aspects. For convenience the prefix nd- will be desig- 
nated as wd-back, or n<i-(7&rf-)back. The same forms are used for the 
customary aspect, but that aspect has its own stems. 

It is often difficult, and sometimes impossible, to differentiate 
na-back from nd- or ni-against, touching, apart from, away from 
touching (10.95-1 0.95m.). The latter prefix combines more readily 
with preceding prefixes than w4-back, or rather its capacity for 
combination is different. When that capacity is tested many 
differences can be detected, but at the same time, there are many 
overlapping forms, and there is often a close relationship in meaning. 

10.93a. 7w£-back progressive 

. . . ing back is taking place progressively 
. . . is . . . ing back progressively 

. . . is . . . ing . . . back progressively 

na-back is conjugated like 'a-thus progressive with n instead of : 
initial (10.80.). Note: 

4 ndjo-- (na-back; dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.) 

i nd y o*- (na-back; 'a-isubj.; yi-prog.) 

Dl nU'd- (na-back; yi-prog,; -id-T>l subj.) 

Plural. Regular forms of the type nd-da-, or n-da- exist for the 
plural although repetitive forms are preferred. Note: 

P3-3 ndayo*- (nd-back; o*a-pl.; yi-3 obj.; yi-prog,) 
3 by 3 nd-yo-- (nd-back; yi-Z subj.; yi-prog.; -yi-3 ag.) 
i by 4 n&Hdo'- (nd-back; 'a-i subj.; dji-4: ag.; yi-prog,) 

na*-around a point . . . -tlic be frenzied, hurried, rush about, move 

madly around a point (YM 216) 
nd--again. . . -T (prog.) move back again 

10.93b. mi-back future 

. . . ing back will take place 
. . . will . . . back 
. . . will ... it back 

10.93b -10.94. prefixes 221 

Prefix A-(< nd-) back to regular future forms (10.87.) and note: 



tiAn' I (nd-h&ck; yi-3 obj. ; di-fut. ; yvprog.) 

y niido-'- } ( n{i - back 5 yi'S subj.; dt-fut.; yi-prog.; -yt-3 ag.) 

-2$** turn inside out 

0-ni-(< nd-in arc) . . . -tcil embrace, put arms around (YM 35) 

Otid away from . . ,-htal smallround obj. glances off, ricochets (YM186) 

10.94. nd-(nd~) back, in circle, arc continuative 

. . .ing back takes place 
... is ... ing back 
. . . is . . . ing . . . back 

In the continuative, customary, and perfective aspects nd-b&ck 
requires the inflective prefix (nd-) in the singular and dual forms. 
nd-back assimilates (nd-) in many of the first and third person 
conjugations. In the perfective aspects (nd-) replaces -m-completive 

1 ndc- (no-back; [nd-] ; -c-1 subj.) 

2 ndni- (nd-back; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3 nd^ (nd-back; [nd-]) 

4 ifcdji- (nd-back; dji-4 subj. ; [nd-]) 
i na'd- (nd-back; 'a-i subj.; [nd-]) 

Dl nM*d- (nd-back; [nd-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 ndh-, noh- (nd-back; [nd-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Plural: Prefix n-(< nd-)-da~ to the regular dual forms; note that 
(nd-) does not enter into the plurals. 

3-3 ndyi- \ 

ndi- > (nd-back; yi-3 obj.; [nd-]) 
nii- ) 

3 by 1 ndnec- (nd-back; yi-% subj.; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

3 by 3 nei-- (nd-back; yi-3 subj.; [nd-]; -yi-§ ag.) 

3 by 4 ndji- (nd-back; yi-% subj.; dji-4 ag.; [nd-]) 

(3) by i ndbiHi- (nd-back; bi-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag. ; [nd-]) 

P3 by 3 ndayi- (nd-back; da-pl.; yi-3 subj.; [nd-]; -yi-Z ag.) 

1-i nd'dc- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i ndH- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i nd'd- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]) 

4-i ndH6i- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; [nd-]) 

Dl-i nd'i-d- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]; -vd-Dl subj.) 

D2-i nd'dh- 1 ,*■.,,. ,. r . n T ^ n 

nd'oh- I ( Ma " back J a_1 obj.; [no-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Since nd-{nd-) back is used with a great many stems only a few 
idiomatic compounds will be given. 

*axfr-(< 'aa^-together-nd-circle) . . ,-dd-h (inc.) (-dd-l) one person comes 

back having travelled in a circle 
'axi-h ...-fa-h (inc.) (-td-l) shuffle cards; round obj. is moved back 

into . . . 
'afoid-. . . -T (inc.) (may have singular forms) exchange positions (YM 8) 
*alnd-. . . -dd-h (inc.) (-dd-l) one goes and returns 

222 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10. 94.-10. 94a. 

'abid'-. . . -T (inc.) carry . , . back and forth 

*alnd- . . . -gal (mom.) (-gal) look at one another (NT 130: 10) 

Oa* nd-back-'a-theme. . .-T (inc.) lend . . . to . . . (YM 6) 

*d-thus. . . 4-z\-h (pres.) (-Z-zf I) cease, discontinue (YM 243) 

CM--(< O-nd-against-nd-back) . . ,4-nj-h (pres.) (4-n$) remember, recall 

04'-(<C O-nd-against-nd-back). . .-l-dzid (pres.) (4-dzi-l) fear, be afraid 

of ... 
ndxi- . . . -l-t&a'd (pres.) (-l-tsil) turn around in sitting position 
nd*-again. . . -T (mom., inc.) move . . . back again (YMG 72) 
m-(< na-about) . . . -be*h (pres.) (-be-l) person bathes, swims 
OIti- . . . -l-tci-h (inc.) (-l-tcj'l) take semen sample ; masturbate (YM 36) 
Mi-nd'- . . . -dd'h (inc.) (-dd-l) one person moves straight ahead again 
a?a-. . . -l~yi'h (pres.) (1-yjh) rest, recover breath 

2 xd-nilyf-h you are resting 
4 xd-djilyph he(4) is resting 

Otid . . . 4-tal (inc.) (4-tal) round obj. glances off, ricochets (YM 186) 
Otid--(< ^d-away-nd-back)-(nd-). . ,-J-fe' (pres.) (-l-te-l) discharge, dis- 
miss from job (YM 198) 

10.94a* nd-(nd-)bsi6k m-perfective 

. . . ing has arrived back 
. . . has arrived . . . ing back 
. . . has arrived . . . ing . . . back 

Prefix nrf-back to regular ni-perfective forms in which (nd-) has 
the same function as -rw-completive (10.99a.). Note: 

) (nd-back; ni-pf.; -n-2 subj. ; [nd-]) 

3 nd- (nd-back; m-pf.; [nd-]) 

4 ndji- (nd-back ; dji-1 subj. ; m-pf. ; [nd-]) 
i nd?d- (nd-back; 'a-i subj. ; m-pf. ; [nd-]) 

3-3 nHni- (nd-back; yi-3 obj.; m-pf.; [nd-]) 

by 1 ndnic- (nd-back; ni-pf. ; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

i by 1 ndriic- (nd-back; 'a-i subj. ; m-pf.; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

i by 2 ndHni- (nd-back; 'a-i subj.; nt-pf. ; [nd-]; -n-2 ag.) 

i by 3 nd'i- (nd-back; 'a-i subj.; m-pf. ; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

i by 4 ndH6i- (nd-back; 'a-i subj.; dji-4 ag. ; ni-pf.; [nd-]) 

*ax6--(< 'az^-together-nd-back) . . . -dzdh {-dd-l) one person returns in 

a circle 
'd&d-(< 'd-self-Ad-fitted) . . . 4-zas ( (-l-zas) gird oneself, have 

belt on (YM 243) 
*dkd-(< 'd-self-fcd-f itted) ... 4-za-z (4-zas) gird oneself, have belt on 

(YM 243) 
dd- . . . -dzdh (-dd'l) one person returns ahead 
#$•' 'a-beyond-. . ,4-ta-l (4-tal) small obj. bounces back 

3 £#•' 'and'Uad he (Coyote) bounced back like a small round obi 
nd* -again. . ,-T (pf.) move . . . back again 

nd'-again. . . -d$*' (-df-l) eat again 

nik4--(<iniki-nd-heLck) . . . -dzdh (-dd-l) one person returns home 

ao-nd-cycle-nd'-again . . . -xai (-xah) years pass again (BS) 

Otid . . . 4-td-l (4-tal) round obj. ricochets, glances off . . . (YM 1 8(; 

Otid- (< O-^d-nd-back) . . .-l-te' (4-te-l) discharge from job "fire 

(YM 198) 
t6i'-(<i £<J£-out-nd-back) . . . -da-n (-dq4) spring returns 
t6&--(< tdi-out-nd-back) . . .-*-&' (4-fcl) release. . ., let ... go (YM 

I0.94a.-10.94c. prefixes 223 

t66--(< Jdi-out-nd-back). . .-aid (-sil) waken (YM 183) 

Dl t&i-ni-lzid we two are waking 
t66--(< tci-out-nd-back) . . ,-c{ (-ci-l) summer returns (YM 178) 
t66--(< idi-out-nd-back) . . .-l-dzid (-l-dzil) wake up 
3 t64*ndldzid he woke up 

10.94b. nd-{nd-) back 2/i-perfective 

. . . ing back has been taking place 
. . . has been . . . ing back 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . back 

Prefix wa-baok (or n-) to regular forms of yi-perfective (10.104.). 
In the forms which seem not to change (nd-) takes the place of -ni- 
completive, but in the* following forms yi- < yi-prog.-nd- is saturated 
and the vowels are lenghthened : 

Dl nH'd- (nd-back; j/i-prog.; [wd-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 ndo*- (nd-back; yi-prog.; -oh-D2 subj.; [nd-]) 

3-3 ndyi-- (nd-back; yi-Z obj.; yt-prog. ; [nd-]) 

by 1 nd-c- (nd-back; yi-prog.; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 nd- (n-d-back; s/i-prog. ; [nd-]; -yi-Z ag.) 

by 4 ndjo-- (nd-back; dji-4 ag.; t/i-prog. ; [nd-]) 

by D2 ndo-h- (nd-back; 2/i-prog.; [nd-]; -oh-D2 ag.) 

'a-beyond. . . -dzdh (-dad) one person goes back beyond 

y axi-h . . .-ftf, (-td'l) shuffle cards; put small obj. back into together 

(YM 191) 
^alnd'- . . . -T (pf.) carry back and forth 
'd-thus. . ,-l-ya* {-l-ni-l) reconstruct 
V*' 6t*- . . . dzd (-dd'l) one person gets dressed (YM 71) 
yah? a- . . . -T (pf.) go back into enclosure 
Okd'* 'ada-down-nd* -again-. . .-dzdh (-dd'l) one person dismounts; one 

goes back down again off . . . 
xa- . . . 4-yi' ' {-l-yih) take a rest, get Breath back 
ara-out-nd* -again. . . -dzi m * (-dzih) speak out again (NT 130: 11) 
xo-n-(< nd-cycle)-nd- -again. . .-xai (-xah) again years pass 
Ot64 m hdji' 'a-beyond. . .-T (pf.) carry . . . back in, replace with 

10.94c. ?w»-(wa-)back si-perfective 

there has been . . . ing back 
. . . has . . . ed back 
. . . has . . .ed ... back 

Prefix wd-back to the forms of si-(nd-) perfective (10.117a.) the 
order of prefixes being nd-bsbck-si-])i.-(nd-), that is, (nd-) takes the 
place of -m-completive and has certain effects that differ from it. 

3-3 nd-z- t ndyiz;'\ , , , . . Q , . . „ r , ... 
,. * Wna-back; yt-3 obj.; $t-pf.; \na-\) 

1-i nd'si- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; si-pf. ; -c-1 subj.; [nd-]) 

2-i nd'sini- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; **-pf.; -n-3 subj.; [nd-]) 
3-i nd'dz- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; *t-pf.; [nd-]) 

4-i ndHiiz- (nd-back; 'a- 
Dl-i nd'si-d- (nd-back; 'a- 


obj . ; dji-4: subj . ; si-pf . ; [nd-]) 

. ; tft-pf.; [nd-]; -i*d-T>l subj.) 

D2-i nd'80'- (nd-back; 'a-i obj.; $i-pf. ; -oh-D2 subj.; [nd-]) 

224 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.94c.-10.94d. 

P3-3 nda-z- (wd-back; da-ph; yi-Z obj.; *t-pf.; [nd-]) 

by 1 n&8%8- (nd-back; si-pf.; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

by 4 nddzis- (nd-back; cfyt-4 ag. ; si-pf. ; [na-]) 

3 by 3 neinds- (nd-back; yi-Z subj.; si-pf.; [nd-]; -y*-3 ag.) 

i by 3 nd'cw- (nd-back; 'a-i subj.; si-pf.; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

(3) by 3 ndbi'tis- (nd-back; bi-[Z] subj.; 'adi-i ag.; *i-pf. ; [nd-] 

Plural : forms of the type nd-dasvd- or ndasvd- 

-'ah (-'ah) skin, butcher 

-bq-8 (-bq8) lie in a circle 

4-tas (4-tas) spin fine, make spiral 

4-tiih (4-tih) arrange in circular line (YM 198) 

~l-foh (4-foh) smoke tobacco, puff 

•giz (-gis) turn, twist (as valve, faucet) 

•kal (-kal) sew 

4-zV (-l-zih) cut with pliers 

•dzdh (-dd'l) one person makes a revolution 

-dzih (-dzifb) pour 

4-tU-' (-l-tloh) moisten, dampen (YM 217) 

4-tU-" (-l-tloh) become wet (YM 217) 

'alnd- . . . -T (pf.) ... obj. exchange positions (YM 8) 

2 'aln&i'ni- . . . 

3 ^alndi'Z- 

'd-thus. . . 4-z\-d (-l-zi'l) cease, discontinue (YM 243) 
nd-. . .-ka-d (-kal) plants grow again (NT 130:16) 
-Ad-fit. . . -l-zas (4-zas) be girded, have belt on (YM 243) 
-&d-fitted. . . -l-ji* (abs.) be fitted to body 

3 yikdsji' it is fitted to him 

i 'dkdsji* it is fitted to someone 
xd--(<. #a-out-nd-back) . . . -dzd (-dd'l) one person comes back out 

10.94d. nd-back inceptive cessative 

start to pause . . . ing back 

. . . starts to pause . . . ing back 

. . . starts to pause . . . ing . . . back 

nd-back is prefixed to the regular inceptive cessative forms 
(10.105b.). nd-yr-> nav- or ner- to which the subjective pronouns 
are added. The exceptions are: 

'rf • I ( n ^"hack; djiA subj.; yt-cont.; -yi-cess.) 

3-3 ndyi*- (nd-back; yi-Z obj.; j/^-cont.; -yi-cess.) 

(3) by i ndbi'fi*- (nd-back; 6i-[3] subj.; y adi-i ag.; yi-cont.; -yi-cess.) 

In this aspect (nd-) seems not to function or if it does, it is com- 
pletely absorbed by the cessative yi'-. 

The forms are the same for the customary cessative; the prefixes 
are used with the customary stem. 

4-na-h (cust.) (4-na-l) generate electricity (YM 145) 
4-ji'h (cust.) (4-jfrl) blacken, dye black (YM 178) 
•ci'h (cust.) (-cf'l) dye black, cause to become black (YM 178) 
-dzoh (cust.) (-dzoh) mark, scratch (YM 244) 
'acto-down. . . -dd (pres.) (-dd'l) one person dismounts 
'ati-suffering. . .-l-'i-h (cust.) (4-'i-l) injure, punish ; suffering-is-caused- 
to-be-done (YM 133) 

10.94d.-l0.95a. FREircXES 225 

'd-thus-ni-(< nd-back). . .-l-'i'h (oust.) (-l-'fl) repair (YM 129) 

'dko-thus 4-^'h (cust.) (4-*fl) make, do correctly (YM 129) 

Od 'aedja? . . .-Wyh (cust.) (4- 1 } , l) give . . . another chance 

bd 'acdja* ndH-Vj-h he is given another chance (YM 132) 
ya-... -l-tal (4-tal) dash off (YM 187) 

3 ycmd-ltal he is dashing off 
ya-tilt. ..-<&»' (-dzil) pour (YM 240) 
Ofti-. . .-dd'h (-dd'l) one stops over . . . while returning; one finds . . . 

while returning 
OM-. . .4-tci-h (4-tci'l) have nightmare (YM 36) 

10.94e. wd-back perfective cessative 

there has been pausing . . .ing back 
. . . has paused . . . ing back 
. . . has paused . . .ing . . . back 

na- back is prefixed to the perfective cessative forms (10.105c.) 
with the result that the prefixes are the same as those of the 
inceptive cessative (10.94d.) with the following exceptions: 

1 nH*- (nd-back; yi-pvog.; -c-1 subj.; -yi~cew.) 

2 neini- (nd-back; s^-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -gft-cess.) 

Ok&*' . . . -yd (-gd-l) one person dismounted; moved off . . . 

10.95. nd~ or w£-against 

It is impossible to determine the exact character of nd-(nd-) 
against, which may be ni-(ni-), since it occurs internally and 
assimilates to many of the surrounding prefixes. Moreover, since it 
may occur in the same forms as the customary, "against," "back," 
and the customary may be confused. 

/wi-against apparently precedes /wf-back or ?w£-customary, and it 
may be preceded by other prefixes such as na-about or ni-end. 

nd-against may be a postposition that assimilates to the objective 
(possessive) prefix, for example, 6i-na-against > hi- and hi- may 
contract with following prefixes (cp. 10.95g-m.). 

I cannot agree with WM, who insists that this nd-(nd-) is custom- 
ary, chiefly because it may occur in addition to nd-customary, and 
because the inflective prefix (nd-) behaves like (nd-)against rather 
than like (nd-)back. Furthermore, nd- is used with all aspects — it is 
by no means limited to the customary. 

10,95a* ?id-(?ia-)against continuative 

there is . . . ing against 
. . . is . . . ing against 
. . . is . . . ing . . . against 
. . . is . . . ing against . . . 

nd- (or m'-)against is conjugated like d/-start against (10.90a.) 
with n instead of d initial, very few changes taking place because of 
the instability of n. Note: 

226 NAVAHO OBAMMAB 10.95a. 

2 nini- (nd-against; [nd-] against; -n-2 subj.) 

3 ndni- (nd-against ; [na-] against) 

3-3 ndini- (nd-against; yi-3 obj.; [rid-] against) 

by 3 n&- (nd-against; [rid-] against; -yi-3 ag.) 

-l-i (pres.) (-l-'rl) test the truth (WM, FH) 

-rlih (mom.) (-riih) give the wink to, wink to someone to prevent his 

saying something 
-tse-l (pres.) (-tail) pound 
-tci-h (inc.) (-tci-l) bear down on, bear children 

'a-theme. . .-*£ (pres.) (-*$•$) be able to see (YM 101) 
'aat-together . . . -Z-'f (pres.) (-l-"fl) look at each other (EW 78:26) 
Oi~(< O-nd-against). . . -'d-h (inc.) (-'d*£) dip bread in stew, soup; move- 
round - obj . -against - it 
0{-(< O-nd-against) . . . -id -h (inc.) (-tah) try ; practice shooting at target 

Oi-(<i O-nd-against). . .-l-kal (mom.) (-l-kal) chop off 
Oi-( < CO-nd-against) . . .-yil (mom.) (-yil) push 
Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . . -djih (mom.) (-djih) rub with sand 
0£-(< O-nd-against). . ,-tioh (mom.) (-ito-l) tie . . . to. . . 
no-about-Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . . -ta-h (inc.) {-tah) try, make an attempt 

against ... (YM 185) 
wd-against. . .-tal (mom.) (-tal) kick against (YM 196) 
nd-against. . .-had (pres.) {-kal) caress, pet 
nd-against. . ,-yas (mom.) (-yas) scratch with claws (YM 77) 
nd-. . .-yil (mom.), -yil (pres.) (-yil) rub, feel, massage, press against, 

treat by rubbing (FH) 
nd- . . . -l-xal (mom.) (-l-xal) club, strike with clublike obj. 
nd-. . ,-so-l (inc.) (sol) blow . . . (FH) 
nd-against- 'a-beyond. . . -yil (mom.) (-yil) give a push 
U6-(<L #t-security-nd-against) . . ,-dzin (pres.) (-dzj'l) have courteous 

/&*-(< AJi-over-nd-against) . . .-l-dg-h (inc.) (-l-dg-l) smooth 
#£-(< Alt-sever-nd-against) . . . -tg-h (mom.) (-tg-l) break, fracture (YM 

#£-(< ^-sever-nd-against)-(nd-). . .-l-dla-d (pres.) (-l-dlal) tear apart 

tdi-out, . . -yd'd (inc.) (-yol) drive several out 
01 no-about- , ax£-(< 'aa^-together-nd-against)-2:-(< ctei-away) . . . -l-tsin 

(pres.) (-l-tfyl) box with ; punch-together-here-and-there (YM 224) 

In the following nd-(nd-) seems to mean "against" and the stems 
are customary: 

O'oh nd-cust. . . . -l-qrh (-l-'q-l) be inefficient, inadequate; unable to 

afford . . . (YM 10) 
Odd nd-cust. . . . -l-ni-h (-l-ni-l) desire to possess, covet (YM 159) 
na-about-Oi-(< 0-nd-against)nd-cust. . . .-tah (-tah) try (YM 185) 
nd- . . . -l-^-h (-l-'yl) look at, see 

nd-cust -'i-h (-^i'l) steal (YM 101) 

nd-'axi- . . . -Z-'f h (-l-'%-l) look at each other 

ni-(< no-about)nd-cust. . . .-fa-h (-td-l) orate (YM 190) 

ni-(< nd-against)nd-cust -tal (-tal) kick again and again (YM 186) 

ni-(< nd-against)nd-cust. . . .-yas (-yas) claw at (YM 77) 

»i-(< nd-cust.) (nd-). . .-l-tfyh (-l-tsf-l) punch, pommel (YM 224) 

yah'a-rid-cuBt -l-nih (-l-ni-l) stick head in and jerk it back (YM 166) 

10.95^_io.95c. PREFIXES 227 

Jci-(< &v ^^^*.-.v«to,g«Uioi>)»vt-(<! /*a-o\i»t.). . . -l-dy-h ('l-dg-l) straighten 

hard substance (IJAL 12:11) 
/&-(< /&-over-nd-against)nd-cust.-'a-i-(nd-). . ,4-tCQ'h (-l-tco*l) erase 
0M-(< A&-over-nd-against)nd-cust.-'a-i-(nd-) -tcV (-tcil) fumble 

amongst, fumble over (YM 41) 
#a-out-nd-cust. . . . -l-tca? (-l-tcal) card wool; cause-to-swell-out (YM 33) 
$d£-out-nd-cust.. . .-l-tc&h (-l-tc6*l) drive it out, one chases another 

(YM 33) 

10*95b. wa-against m-perfective 

. . . ing against has happened 
. . . has arrived . . . ing against 
. . . has arrived . . . ing against 

The prefix na-against is conjugated in the ni-perfective exactly 
like de-start against wi-perfective (10.90b.) with n instead of d 

-'a*' {-'ah) deceive, fool (FH) 

-J.'f (-«-'i- 1) look at 

-yil (-yil) push, poke, nudge, touch 

'oat-together. . .-Z-'f (-l-'i-l) look at each other (YM 101) 
'd-thus. . . 4-fe (abs.) be numerous (YM) 
Oi-(< 0-nd-against)-'a-i. . . -l-'q'd (-l-'q-l) measure (YM 10) 
0i-(< O-nd-againstXa-i. . .-l-'q-d (4-*q*l) measure up to..., be ade- 
quate to . . . , be able to afford . . . (YM 10) 
0{-(< O-nd-against). . .-yil (-yil) touch, shove (with purpose of waken- 

ing ...)(FH) 
0i-(< O-nd-against) . . . -dfyd (-dlj-l) be interested in (YM 54) 
xa- . . . 4-x$-j (4-x$c) irrigate 

10.95c. na-against yi-perfective 

there has been . . . ing against 
. . . has been . . .ing against 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . against 

7k$-against, when prefixed to t/t-perfective (10.104.) has the same 
forms as n'i-uniform ^i-perfective (10.98b.) with the following ex- 
ceptions. Obviously the analysis is different: 

Dl ni*d- (nd-against; yi-prog.; [wd-]; -i*d-T>\ subj.) 

D2 no*- (nd-against; t/*-prog, ; -oh-D2 subj.; [nd-]) 

by 1 n4c- (nd-against; j/^-prog. ; [nd-] ; -c-1 ag.) 

(3) by i bVtimo*- (bi- [3] subj.; y adi-i ag.; nd-against; 2/i-prog.; [nd~]) 

-'<*•' (-'ah) deceive (YM 13, YMG 88, FH) 
-#v' (4ah) be deceived 

'a-beyond. . . -l-yil (-l-yil) doze (YM 89) 

4 J ajno'lyil he(4) dozed 

i Hriclyil someone dozed 
'altogether. . .-ff » (-fyl) see each other (EW 78:26) 
'd-thus . . . 4-nin (abs.) be nice, fine, beautiful (NT 168 : 22) 
0&* . . . 4-ti' (4-ti*) keep at . . . , stay with it, persist at . . . 

3 yfrni-lti* he kept at it 
0£-(< O-nd-against) . . . 4- J e*z (-l-'is) push foot against 
Odd. . ,-hni'd (4-ni-l) desire uncontrollably (YM 59) 

16 Reichard 

228 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.95c.-10.9De. 

yatia- . . . -Z-ne' (-l-ni-l) stick head in and jerk it out (YM 164) 
Oya- 'a- . . . -de-* (-dah) group falls under . . . 's power (YM 45) 
cca-out. . .-l-ya-j (-l-yoc) bubble up (YM 86) 
a?a-out. . .-l-tca-d (-l-tcal) card wool; cause swelling out (YM 33) 
Oza- t ..-t$ (-fd-l) kiss (YM 89, 191) 

10.96d. wa-(wa-)against si-perfective 

The conjugation of (nd-) against with si-perfective differs from 
that of (nd-) inflective that goes with nd-b&ck (10.94c), as demon- 
strated by the following forms, (nd-) against is usually preceded by 
nd- or an equivalent prefix which also enters into combination in a 
fashion phonetically somewhat different from 7&d-back, In this con- 
jugation the forms are given that enter into the part of it nearest the 
stem complex. These forms are comparable with, but not identical 
to those of m-uniform-si-perfective (cp. 10.98c). The main differ- 
ence is that an extra n enters into the conjugation, and dominates s: 

(si-pf. ; -c-1 subj. ; [nd-] against) 
(si-pf. ; -n-2 subj. ; [nd-] against) 
(si-pf. ; [nd-] against) 

(dji-4 subj.; si-pf. ; [nd-] against) 
(si-pf.; [nd-] against; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

(si-pf. ; -o/t-D2 subj. [nd-] against ;) 

(yi-S obj. ; si-pf, ; [nd-] against) 
(si-pf. ; [nd-] against; -c-1 ag.) 
(si-pf. ; [nd-] against; -yi-3 ag.) 
na > (-l-nah) choke on . . . (YM 149) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against). . .-fc£*' (-tah) try (YM 185) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against). . .-l-tlah (-l-tlah) hinder, delay, prevent 
Oi-(< O-nd-against )nd-0- . . .-l-tq-' (-l-tyl) instruct... in it; teach it 

to . . . (YM 209) 
nd-against. . .-td-l (-tal) kick; move round obj. (foot) against (YM 186) 
nd-against . . . -l-xa-l (-l-xal) club. . . ; cause clubbing against 
nd-against. . . -sol (-sol) blow against (FH) 

Dl ndne-lzol we two blew against 
nd-against--(< 'a-theme). . . -l-ya-l (-l-yal) eat too much meat (FH) 

10.95e, nrf-st-against un-. . . oontinuative 

un- . . . ing is taking place 
... is un- . . . ing . . . 

wa-against prefixed to si-un- continuative (cp. 10.118a.) results in 
the following forms : 

1 noc- (nd-against; si-xm-;[nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 nini- (nd-against; si-\m-;[nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3 no- (nd-against; si-un- ; [nd-]) 

4 djino- \ ,,.. A 

djini- J W^ sub J • ; wa-against ; 8%-xm- ; [na-]) 

Dl nid- (nd-against; si-un-; [nd-]; -id-Dl subj.) 

D2 ndh- (nd-against; si-un-;[nd-] ; -o/t-D2 subj.) 





















by 1 


by 3 


*a-theme. , 

. .-u 

I0.95e -10.95g. PBEFIXBS 229 

3-3 yind- (yi-3 obj. ; nd-against; vi-xm- ; [nd-]) 

by 1 »e*c- (nd-against; si-vm-; [wd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 »<*- \ , , - . r ' n • o ^ 

n£- I (na-against ; s*-un- ; \na-\ ; -yi-3 ag.) 

(3) by i bidirio- (bi- [3] subj.; y adi~i ag.; nd-against; ai-wi~; [nd-]) 
-'a-h (pres.) (-'ah) deceive (YM 13) 

Oi-(<C O-nd-against) . . . -l-'a-h (pres.) (-l-'ah) mistake, fail to distinguish, 

falter (WM, FH) 
0i-(< -nd-against )nd-cust.. . .-l-'a-h (cust.) (-l- y ah) make mistakes in 

thinking ; misplace words, names (FH) 
nd-cust. . . . -'ah (cust.) (-'ah) deceive cust. (YM 13) 
yi- . . . -Hah (mom.) (-rlah) become untied without agency 

10.95f. On-, Ond-, Om'-against . . . , apart from . . . 

Since -?i-, -nd-, or -ni- as a form of the postposition "against" 
assimilates to its objective (possessive) prefix to become the type 
form bi-, and since W-against it then contracts with the aspective 
prefixes, paradigms are given to show the phonetic changes.- 

In these forms there may be two objects, one of the stem, one of 
the postposition. The pattern is of the type Oi- but the paradigm is 
given with hi- objective (possessive) prefix. 

10.95g. O-ii-, O-wa-against . . . progressive 

. . . ing against ... is taking place progressively 
. . . is . . . ing against . . . progressively 
. . . is . . . ing . . . against . . . progressively 

1 bi-c- (bi- [3J obj.; nd-against; y*-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 b&- \ 

bi*. J l° tm [ 3 1 ohj.; nd-against; ^i-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 yi-- (yi-3 obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.) 

4 bidjo-- (bi- [3] obj .; nd-against ; dji-4 subj.; ^t-prog.) 
i 6oV- (bi- [3] obj. ; nd-against; 'a-i subj. ; yi-prog.) 

Dl bi-d- (bi- [3] obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.; -id-Dl subi.) 

D2 bi-h- 1 

b6-h- J <™" £ 3 ] ob J- ; n ^-against; yi-piog. ; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Plural: prefix bi-da- to regular progressive duals (10.84.) and 

P2 Uda-h- (bi- 3 obj.; nd-against; da-ph; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

3-3-yiyo'- (yi-Z obj.; nd-against; yi-S obj.; yi-prog.) 

P3-3 yidayo-- (yi-Z obj.; nd-against; da-ph; yi-Z obj.; yi-pxog.) 

(3) by i bi'fo-- (bi- [3] subj.; nd-against; 'adi-i ag.; yi-prog.) 

It will be noted that most of the stems used with this conjugation 
have the actual or implied meaning of "against" or its opposite, 
"off, away from against, apart." 

-T (prog.) move . . .against . . . 

-l-tal kick 

-l-ne* chop off 

-nah rub body against 

•riih hurt 

230 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 10.95g -l.o.H&h. 

-gil be pushed (YM 79) 
4-kuh track, overtake by tracking 
•hkal chip off 

-l-yal eat off bone, eat like an animal 
•yil push 
l-yil pushing is caused 

D2 hi-sil you two are pushing against it 
•dzil be pushed 
-tiah eat mushy substance 
-joh brush, comb 
-dji-l be called by name 
-djol brushy, fluffy substance moves 
•lie cause squirting, urinate 
-tio-l tie to . . . 
xa- . . . -cic poke eyes out; cause long pointed obj. to move against . . . 

10.95h. Ond- (wa-)against . . . continuative 

there is . . . ing against — 
— is . . . ing against 
. . . is . . . ing against . . . 

1 bde- (bi- [3] obj.; nd-against; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 bini- (bi- [3] obj.; nd-against; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3 yi- (yi-3 obj.; nd-against; [nd-]) 

4 bldjU (bi- [3] obj . ; nd-against ; dji-4 subj . ; [nd-]) 
i b&&- {bi- [3] obj. ; nd-against; 'a-i subj. ; [nd-]) 

Dl bi-d- (bi- [3] obj.; nd-against; [nd-]; -i'd-Dl subj.) 

(6^- [3] obj.; nd-against; [nd-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

D2 bih 

Plural: prefix bi-da- to regular continuative duals (10.84a.). 

The above examples are to be read "I ... against it," etc. In the 
following the pattern is extended to indicate the object of the post- 
position nd-against as well as the object of the stem, for example, 
3-3 against 3 "he is- . . .ing it against it;" 1 against i "I am . . .ing 
against something;" 1-i against i "I am . . .ing something against 

3-3 against 3 y6*-, yi'-\ . . _ , . , . , . _ , . _ , „ 
yiyi- J ^ obj.; na-against; yi-3 obj.; [na-]) 

Hndc- fa-i obj.; nd-against; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

l-ni- fa-i obj.; nd-against ;[nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

Ca-i obj.; nd-against; [nd-]) 

1 against i 

2 against i 

3 against i 


4 against i *i-dji- fa-i obj. ; nd-against ; dji-4 subj. ; [nd-']) 

Dl against i 't-d- ('a-i obj.; nd-against; [no-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 against i 'oh- fa-i obj. ; nd-against; [nd-]; -oh-D2 subj.) 

. Plural against i : prefix 9 -6*-(< 'a-i obj .-wd-against) to regular da-pl. 
continuatives (10.84a.). 

l-i against i '&&c- ('a-i obj.; nd-against; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i against i T£- ('a-i obj.; nd-against; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i against i '^M- ('a-i obj.; nd-against; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]) 

4-i against i HH6i- ('a-i obj.; nd-against; 'a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; [nd-]) 

Dl-i against i y Vi-d- ('a-i obj.; nd-against; 'a-i obj. ;[nd-]; -i-d-T>\ subj.) 

D2-i against i 'o'oh- ('a-i obj.; nd-against; 'a-i obj.; [nd-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

10.95h.-10.95j. pbefixbs 231 

S&-h (inc.) (-'<£•*) dip bread in liquid, "dunk" 

4- y i (pres.) (-l-'i'l) imitate; do as . . . does (FH) 

-l-t$-c (inc.) (-l-tqc) shoot at (NT 46:26) 

-J-ne' (cust.) (-l-nil) chip, chip off . . . (YM 163) 

-nV (pres.) (-riah) rub back against it 

-l-ka-l (pres.) (-l-kal) chip, chip of f . . . 

-djih (pres.) (-cbjih) rub granular substance against (NT 250: 11) 

-l-dqol (mom.) (-l-djol) rub brushy substance against . . . 

-l-t6i-l (pres.) (-l-tdil) flake, peel off, drop off 

-Uj (pres.) {-lie) squirt against . . . , urinate (YM 135) 

-l-tloh (mom.) (>l-tlo4) tie . . . to . . . 

-l-tto-h (inc.) (-l-tlo-l) tie. . . to ... 

no-about. . .-yil (pres.) (-yil) push about (YM 79) 

na-about. . .dzil (pres.) (-dzil) be pushed about 

na-about. . . -lah (pres.) (-la-l) destroy; cause ceremony against 

nd-. . .-yil (pres.) (-yil) rub . . . (FH) 

10.95L 0-nd-(nd-) against . . . wi-perfective 

. . . ing against . . . has been completed 
. . . has completed . . . ing against . . . 
, . . has completed . . . ing . . . against — 

Prefix bi-(< bi-[S] obj.-7wi-against) to regular ni-perfective forms 
( 10.99a.) with the following results : 

1 bini- (6i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; ni-pf.; -c-1 subj.; [nd-]) 

2 bi-ni- (6i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; ni-pf.; -n-2 subj.; [nd-]) 

3 yd-- (yi-3 obj.; -nd-against; ni-pf.; [nd-]) 

4 bijni- (6i-[3] obj. ; -nd-against; d/i-4 subj. ; ni-pf. ; [nd]) 
3-3 yi-ni- (yi-3 obj.; -nd-against; yi-3 obj.; ni-pf. ; [nd-]) 

(3) by i 6i'fe- (&i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; 'adi-i ag. ; ni-pf. ; [nd-]) 

by 3 against (3) bd-- (6i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; ni-pf.;[nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

-l-ka'l (-l-kal) chop off . . . 

ni-end. . . -gil (-gil) be pushed so far, be pushed to end (YM 79) 

ni-end . . . -yil (-yil) push so far ; push to end (YM 79) 

10.95J. 0-w4-(wa-)against . . . ^-perfective 

there has been . . . ing against . . . 

has been . . . ing against . . . 

. . . has been . . .ing . . . against . . . 

1 bd-- (6i-[3] obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; [nd-]) 

2 bi-ni-\ 

bi-- > (bi-[3] obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; [nd-]) 
bd- J 

3 yd-- (yi-3 obj.; nd-against; yi-prog. ; fnd-]) 

4 bidji-- (6i-[3] obj.; nd-against; dji-4: subj.; yi-prog. ; [nd-]) 
i bid- (&i-[3] obj.; nd-against; 'a-isubj.; yi-prog.; [nd-]) 

Dl bi-d- (6i-[3] obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.; [nd-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 bo*- (bi-[%\ obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.; [nd-]) 

by 1 b6-c- (bi-[3] obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

by 4 bidjo-- (&i-[3] obj.; nd-against; dji-4 ag.; yi-prog.; [nd-]) 

by D2 be-h- (6i-[3] obj.; nd-against; yi-prog. ; [nd-] ; -oh-T>2 ag.) 

3 by 3 yiyo*~ (yi-3 obj.; nd-against; yi-subj.; yi-prog.; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

i by 3 'e'*- fa-i obj.; nd-against; yi-prog.; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

232 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 10.95 j.-10.95 la 

P3 by 3 yidayo-- (yi-S obj.; nd-against; da-ph; t/i-3 subj.i p-prog. ; [nd-] ; 

*yi-Z ag.} 

3-3 against 3 yv- 1 , - « i_- ' ■ x • o ^- * r ' -n 

yiyiyi-f (^ _3 obj. ; na-against ; yt-3 obj.; y». prog.; [na-]) 

-'qt*d (-'<?*£) be confined, enclosed, contained 

.'q,(-*d'l) dip . . . against, "dunk" 

-l-ne* (-l-nvl) chip, chip off by pounding 

-nV (-nih) be hurt 

-ka-l (-kal) chop, chop off by knocking 

-yq-d (stat.) parts of confining surface have been covered (AB) 

•t&4-* (-t£ah) eat mushy, viscid substance 

-jo-' (-joh) comb, brush 

-ci-j (-cic) poke against 

-dja-' (-djih) rub with sand, granular substance 

-djo-l (-djol) rub with brushy substance 

•tc\-d (stat.) be slightly, noticeably stronger (after great weakness) 

-l-t&il (-1-16U) flake, peel off (as skin, paint) 

xa- . . . -l-ne' (-l-ni-l) punch out, pound out (NT 426 : 10) 
xa- . . . -d'j (-cic) poke out . . . 

4-i against 3 xabVtdi-ci'j he(4) poked out (his eyes) (EW 78: 14) 

10.95k, 0~nd-(nd-) against . . . si-perfective 

it exists . . . ed against 
. . . has . . . ed against 
— has . . . ed ... against — 

Prefix bi- (< fei-na-against) to si-(n4-) perfective forms (10.117a.) 
and note: 

. . .ing against 3 b&z- (6i-[3] obj. ; -nd-against; *t-pf. ; [nd-]) 
— ing against i H-z- fa-i obj.; -nd-against; #i-pf.; [nd-]) 
3 against 3 yfrz- (yi-S obj.; -nd-against; si-pf. ; [nd-]) 

3-3 against 3 2/*^-| ( ^. 3 obji . .^against; yi-$ obj.; si-pf.; [nd-]) 
yt'Z- ) 
by 3 against 3 biyis- (6t-[3] obj.; -nd-against; *t-pf.; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 
by i against 3 bVfis- (bi-[3] obj.; -nd-against; Wi-i ag. ; #i-pf.; [nd-]) 

-l-dd (-l-da-l) watch, take care of . . ., guard; cause-sitting-against . . . 

-yil (-yil) push 

-ify* 9 (-tfyl) be heard; sound against . . . (YM 222) 

-Ivj (-lie) squirt against, urinate (YM 135) 

-l-tty (-l-tt6>l) tie . . . to . . . 

na-about . . . -d\-d (-d{-l) dwindle, diminish, be destroyed (NT 342 : 6) 

na-about. . . -sd (-wl) destroy; cause evil against here and there, cause 

ceremony against . . . (YM 139) 
nd- . . . -yil (-yil) rub against (FH) 

10.951. 0-7&a-against . . . inceptive cessative 

there is — ing alongside . . . 

. . . ing against . . . starts to pause 

... is starting to pause . . . ing against . . . 

Prefix bi-(< 6i-(3) obj.-7k£-against) to regular inceptive cessative 
forms (10,105b.) with the following results: 










bidji' - 



D2 boh- 


(fo-[3] obj.; -nd-against; t/t-cont.; #t-cess.; -c-1 subj,) 
(6t-[3] obj.; -nd-against; t/t-cont.; yi-cess.; -n-2 subj.) 
(yi-Z obj.; -nd-against; yi-cont.; yi-cess.) 
(bi-[3] obj.; -nd-against; d/i-4 subj.; yi-cont.; yi-cess.) 
(6i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; yi-cont,; yi-cess.; -i*d-Dl subj.) 
(6i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; yi-cont.; yi-cess.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

-I 1 (inc. cess.) move . . . alongside, move ... up the side of — 

-Vc (inc. cess.) (-'oc) two persons go up the side of . . . 

-ta-h (inc. cess.) (-tah) affect by seepage; disintegrate against 

. . . , alongside . . . 
-€&• (inc. cess.) (-tah) fly up along 
-Icd-h (inc. cess.) (-hah) pi. persons go up alongside 
-yd-h (inc. cess.) (-yah) series of events takes place 
-yd'h (inc. cess.) (-gd-l) one person goes uphill 
1 M-cd-h I go uphill 

2 M^i} yougouphill (NT 132:2) 
Oi-(< 0-nd-against)n-(< nd-cust.). . .-tac (cust.) (-foe) two persons go 
uphill (EW 98:1) 

10.95m. 0-7id-against perfective cessative 

. . .ing against, alongside has paused 
. . . ing up or down hill has paused 
. . . has paused . . . ing up or down hill 
The forms of the perfective cessative are like those of the inceptive 
cessative (10.951.) except: 

1 &{*- (&i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; yi-cess.) 

2 bini- (&i-[3] obj.; -nd-against; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; yi-cess.) 

-T (pf.cess.) move . . . uphill 

-*&'j (-*oc) two persons go uphill 

-to*' (-tah) affect by seepage; disintegrate by . . .ing alongside 

-fa* (-tah) fly uphill, fly alongside up 

-t% (-td-l) one is added to . . . (YM 7) 

-riil (-riil) pi. obj. are added to . . . (YME 1) 

-yd (-gd'l) one person goes uphill 

-kai (-hah) pi. persons go uphill * 

-ya* (-yah) series of ceremonial events takes place 

10.96, nd'-(nd-) again, another time, another one 

The prefixes wd*-again and wa-back, often appearing together, 
are frequently confused, twt -again may be prefixed to any form of 
the verb. Like ?io-back, 7wr-again sometimes, but not always, 
requires the d-form of the stem. There seems to be the idea that if an 
action can be accomplished "again" the agent is known. If other 
prefixes do not intervene, or if those that do require the inflective 
(nd-), nd*-again requires the inflective (nd-) in the continuative, 
customary, and perfective, singular and dual. The following remarks 
apply to the cases in which 7&d*-again enters into the conjugation. 

wa--again is prefixed to the progressive forms exactly as nd- 
back progressive (10.93a.). The plural has a tendency to take 
repetitive or prolongative forms (10.91, 10.106a.). 

234 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.96-10.^7. 

In the continuative the conjugation is nd--(nd-) as in 10.94. 

7wr-again is prefixed to the regular d£-start against-m-perfective 
with n instead of d initial (10.90b.) and the following forms are 
distinctive : 

4 nd-jni- (nd--again; dji-4 subj. ; wt-pf. ; [nd-]) 
4-i nd-jrli- (wd*-again; dji-S subj.; 'a-i obj.; ni-pf.; [n&-]) 

10.96a. nd'-(nd-) again t/i-perfective 

When nd* -again is prefixed to the regular forms of t/i-perfective 
(10.104.), forms of the following pattern result : 

3 by 1 nd'ndc- (rtd--again; yi-Z subj.; yt-prog.; [wd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

3 by D2 nd-nd'h- (nd--again; yi-Z subj.; yi-prog.; [n-d-]; -oh-D2 ag.) 

3 by P2 nd-da-h- (wd*-again; da-pl.; yi-Z subj.; ^i-prog.; -oh-D2 ag.) 

i by 4 nd-H6o-- (wd'-again; 'a-i subj.; dji-± ag.; t/t-prog.; [nd-]) 

-d4 % * (-df-l) eat (gen.) 
-did-' (-dlf-l) drink 

nd- -again. . ,-T (pf.) move . . . back again 

niki-n-(<i wd-back)wd' -again. . ,-dzd (-dd-l) one person starts home 

Okd-' 'dda-(K 'a-nd-dah back down )nd- -again. . .-yd (-gd-l) one person 

gets down again ; dismounts again 
2di-out-nd*-again. . . -td-j (-tac) two persons start out again 
<d£-out-nd--again. . . -kai (-kah) pi. persons start out again 
2<Ji-out-nd* -again. . . -dzd (-dd-l) one person starts out again 

10.97. m-absolute 

Note that the passive agents yi- and dji- can absorb this ni- 
without change of tone, but dji-4 active voice subject cannot. 

(nt-abs.; -c-1 subj.) 

(ni-abs.; -n-2 subj.) 


(dji-4 subj. ; m-stat.) 

('a-i subj.; ni-stat.) 

(wt-stat.; -i-d-T>l subj.) 

(rn-stat.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

(wt-stat.; -yi-Z ag.) 
(dji-4t subj. ; m-stat.) 

-da-z be heavy (YMG 81) 

-dd' there is Girl's Dance 

•ted be wide 

-l-U' (dual and pi. only) be ... in number 

-ne-z, -ni-z be long, tall, deep 

-yi^ be healthy 

•tsa'h be enlarging 

•t8oh be large 

-1-tMl be firm, stubborn, resistant 

•joni be nice, pretty, good, satisfactory 

-tcxd-H be ugly, filthy, worn, out of order, ruined 


nc-y nic- 











D2 noh- 

l xuia 

by 3 


by 4 


10.97 .-10.98a. prefixes 235 

-l\ be (belong to) 

-tiah be clumsy, awkward, handicapped 

•tiiz be hard 

'a- . . . -tah be among (YMG 26) 

3 'atah he is amongst them 
Oa- ... -Usf (-tci'l) be stingy with (YM 35) 

10.98. m-uniform progressive 

m-uniform is essentially a progressive-continuative prefix. It 
behaves like yi-progressive with n instead of y initial (10.102.); it is 
conjugated in the continuative and has yi-perfective (as well as 

10.98a. wi-uniform continuative 

uniform . . . ing takes place 
. . . ing continues uniformly 
. . . moves uniformly 
. . . moves . . . uniformly 

1 nic- (m-uni.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 ni- (m-uni.; -w-2 subj.) 

3 ni- (m-uni.) 

4 djini- (d?i-4subj.; m-uni.) 
i 'ant- ('a-i subj. ; m-uni.) 

Dl ni-d- (m-uni.; -vd-Dl subj.) 

D2 noh- (m-uni.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

Plural: Prefix da-pl. to dual forms. Plural intransitive uniform 
continuative forms often take the prolongative conjugation (10.91.), 
but regular ni-unif orm plurals may be used with transitive forms. 

3-3 yini- (yi-3 obj.; m-uni.) 

3 by 3 yini- {yi-3 subj.; m-uni. ; -yi-% ag.) 

(3) by i bi'fini- (bi-Z subj.; 'adi-i ag.; m-uni.) 

•t6-h (mom.) (-tfrl) one animate obj. is lying 
•ni (pres.) (-ni'l) pi. are dying (YM 218) 
-#e' (pres.) (-tte'l) cool to normal (YM 117) 

'a-beyond. . . -dzin (pres.) (-dzi'l) be cursed, witched 

Oa- . . .-l-'rh (inc.) (-«-'fl) slip ... to .. . (YM 102) 

Oa* 'a-beyond. . . -dak (pres.) (-dah) fall into . . . 's power (YM 45) 

'a-self -Aft-over . . .-l-tcfrh (pres.) (-l-tcfrl) drive (attacker) off (YM 33) 

na-about. . .-tin (pres.) (-tyl) instruct, teach, coach (YM 209) 

net-about. . .-fa (pres.) (-td-l) orate, make speech (YM 190) 

na-about- 'a-i. . . -T (pres.) move some . . . about 

na-cust. . . . -T (cust.) move . . . cust. 

nd-. . . 4-nah (pres.) (-l-nah) choke while swallowing 

xa-. . ,-td (pres.) (-ta-l) hunt, search for (YM 184) 

xa-. . .-l-y&'c (inc.) (-l-yoc) bubble up (YM 86) 

xa- . . . -l-tca-d (pres.) (-l-tcal) card wool (YM 33) 

xo- . . . -tiah (-thl) place is difficult 

Oza . . .-ta-h (-tfcl) (pres.) kiss (YM 191) 

236 NAVAHO GRAMMAR I0.98b.-10.98c. 

10,98b. ni-uniform j/i-perfective 

uniform ing has been taking place 

. . . has been . . . ing uniformly 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . uniformly 

The «/i-perfective forms of m-uniform are like those of di-emit 
yi-perfective (10.88b.) with n instead of d initial. 

'a-beyond. . .-Ui'j (-tlic) squirm off 

rii-end — -l-tfc*j (~l-tlie) squirm to end 

rn-end — -yd (-ga-l) one has given up (but will go on) (FH) 

ni-end-xo-things-. . .-yq-d (-ytyl) be smartest, most intelligent, wisest 

2 nixwi*niyq*d you are the most intelligent 

Dl nixoni*dzq*d we are the most intelligent 
idi-out-nt-end . . .-yo-d (-yol) drive several out to end (FH) 

10.98c. nt-uniform ai-perfective 

there has been uniform . . . ing 
. . . has . . . ed uniformly 
. . . has . . . ed ... uniformly 

The ^-perfective forms of ni-uniform are like those of si-perfective 
(10.117) with n instead of s initial and note: 

4 dzine-z- (dji-4t subj. ; rii-uni. ; s^-pf. ; -wi-compl.) 
sino-- I fai-uni. ; ai-pf, ; -oh~T>2 subj. ; -ni-compl.) 

3-3 yine-z- (yi-3 obj. ; rn-uni. ; ai-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 
(3) by i bi^ fines- (6i-[3] subj.; 'odi-i ag.; nt-uni.; *i-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

-T (pf.) — uniformly 

*'4 ("'Q'O measure up to, increase in volume 

■'<•' (-'H) steal, do surreptitiously (YM 93) 

•da (-da-l) one person sits, stays, is at home 

-da* (-da) dance Girl's Dance 

-doi (-doh) be warm, hot 

•ti'j (-tic) two animate obj. lie 

-#•' {-ti'l) be hidden, stolen, done surreptitiously 

-l-yol (-l-yol) bloat 

-gai (-gah) be very hot, feverish 

•gtf (-gic) cut with blade 

-hi (-ke*l) two sit, stay, dwell 

~l-Maz, -l-Ma-z (-l-Uaa) make cold, cool 

-l-Me' (4-Me*l) cool to normal 

-l-]fy (-l-tti) clot, curdle 

•tsiz (-tsia) absorb; extinguish light 

-l-tiah (4-tiah) prevent, hinder, cause difficulty (YMG 93) 

no-about. . .-«#■' (-tf-l) instruct, coach (YM 209) 

na-about. . .-l-td-' (-l-if-l) gallop about (YM 209) 

na-about . . . 4-tlij (-l-ttic) squirm about (FH) 

xa-out. . .-£$•' (-ta-l) search for, hunt f or . . . (YM 184) 

a;o-place . . . -gai (-gah) (3 only) weather is very hot 

tsistia . . .-l-t&f,' 1 (-l-tcil) drive into a corner, "stump by . . .ing" 


10.98d.-10.98e. PREFIXES 237 

10.98d. ni-jmit orm inceptive cessative 

uniform . . . ing is starting to pause 

... is starting to pause . . . ing uniformly 

... is starting to pause . . . ing . . . uniformly 

The conjugation of m-uniform is like that of yi-inceptive cessative 
(10.105b.) with n instead of y initial. Note: 

4 djinv- (dji-4 subj. ; ni-uni. ; -yi-ceaa.) 
3-3 yini-- (yi-% obj.; m-uni.; -yi-cess.) 

-do-h (-doh) warm, heat 

-gd-h (-gah) become very hot, feverish 

-l-gi'C (-l-gic) cut with blade 

-Ud'8 (-Mas) become cold 

-tcd-d (-teal) swell (YM 32) 

Oa- 'd-self-nd-cust.-ao-things. . ,-dzj-h (cust.) (-dz\4) be, become aware 

of ... 
nd-cust. . . .-l-doh (cust.) (-l-doh) heat cust. 
nd-cust. . . . -dzyh (cust.) (-dzj'l) want, desire, feel like . . . 

bil ndni-dz\-h he feels sleepy ; he desires sleep 

dloh ndni-dzi'h he feels like laughing 
rid-. . .-tedd (inc.cess.) (-teal) be satiated, have enough to eat (YM 32) 

4 ndjni'tcd'd he(4) has enough to eat 
wd-cust.-:ro-place. . .-l-doh (cust.) (-l-doh) cust. heat space 
«.£-(< wd-cust.)nd- . . . -tea* (cust.) (-teal) have enough to eat cust. 

4 nindjni-tca' he(4) cust. has enough to eat 
ki-(K fct-touch-nd-agamst) , . . -cd'C (inc.cess.) (~coc) layparallel obj. side 
by side (YM 190) 

&i-(< /ct-touch-nd-against)-nd-cust. -coc (cust.) (-coc) cust. lay parallel 

obj. side by side (YM 180) 
a?o-place. . . -l-dd-h (inc.cess.) (-l-doh) heat space 
xo-place. . . -l-ts$'S (inc.cess.) (-l-tsgs) deflate, be wrinkled, shrivelled 

10.98e. wi-uniform perfective cessative 

uniform . . . ing has paused 

. . . has paused . . . ing uniformly 

. . . has paused . . . ing , . . uniformly 

The forms of m-uniform perfective cessative are like those of yi- 
perfective cessative (10.105c.) with n instead of y initial. Note: 

2 nini- (m-uni. ; -n-2 subj.; yi-ceaa,) 

4 djini*- (dji-4 subj. ; m-uni.; yi-ceaa.) 

3-3 yini-- (yi-3 obj.; ru-uni.; yi-ceaa.) 

P3-3 daini*- (da-pi.; yi-3 obj.; ni-uni.; yi-ceaa.) 

-doi (-doh) become hot, warm 

-l-yol (4-yol) inflate, bloat, deflate 

-l-yo'l (4-yol) inflate, bloat, deflate 

-gai (-gah) become very hot, feverish; whiten 

-gij (-gic) cut with blade 

-Ua'Z (-Mas) become cold, cool off 

'a-beyond-w-d'-again-'a-theme. . . -'a-l (~'al) chew again 

Oa- 'a-thus-aso-things. . .-zf (-zj-l) be, become aware of . . . (YM 243) 

'd-JSi- . . . -l-tcfy^ (-i-td-l) drive off attacker 













D2 noh- 

238 NAVAH0 grammar 10.98e.-10.99a. 

&£-(< K-touching-nd-against) . . . -co-j (-coc) lay parallel obj. side by 
side (YM 180) 

3-3 kvni*c6-j he laid parallel obj. side by side 

H&-. . . . -dz{^ (-dz\'l) have attitude of courtesy to relatives 

10.99. wi-start for inceptive 

— ing starts for 
. . . starts . . . ing for 
. . . starts . . . ing . . . for 

wi-start for is comparable with yi-continuative (10.103.) and di- 
start from (10.88a.), but since n is unstable in ways different from 
d and y, the conjugation differs, m-start for implies continuative 
action or motion and is used with the inceptive stem. 

(m-start for; -c-1 subj.) 
(rn-start for; -n-2 subj.) 
(ni-start for) (This form indicates that m-probably 

includes yi-cont.) 
(dji-4: subj. ; m-start for) 
(Vj-i subj. ; m-start for) 
(m-start for; -i-d-T>l subj.) 
(rn-start for; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Plural: Prefix da-pl. to regular dual forms. 

3-3 yi- (yi-% obj.; ni-start for) 

1-i y anic- ('a-i obj.; ni-start for; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i 'cmi- ('a-i obj.; m-start for; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i 'i- ('a-i obj.; m-start for) 

4-i *adji- ('a-i obj. ; dji-4, subj. ; m-start for) 

(3) by i bi'fe*- (6i-[3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; m-start for) 

wi-start for inceptive may be used with any verb of motion; 
hence only a few stems are given here. 

-T (inc.) start . . .ing ... for 

-l-dcl (-l-dil) eat berries 

-te'C (-tic) blacken with soot, apply soot 

-to-d (-fol) suck on 

-rt&'l (-riah) crawl 

-g&d (-got) be dug with implement 

-ya-l (-yal) roll eye 

•djj- (-djf-l) streak black, make black line 

'oda-down xo-place. . . -si*d (inc.) (sil) rake . . . down in place 

Oct- . . .-T (inc.) give . . . to . . . (YM 5) 

ba' wait 'a-beyond. . ,-T (inc.) lend . . . to . . . (YM 6) 

£&•-(< fc*{-out-wd-back)-'a-theme. . .-dzvd (inc.) (-dzil) waken, wak< in 

Ol tdi-out . . . -'a*/t (inc.) (-'d-J) divulge, communicate with . . . 

10.99a. m-perfective 

. . . ing has arrived 

. . . has arrived . . . ing 

. . . has arrived . . . ing . . . , ... has brought . . . 

ni-perfective is the completed inceptive; it is used to ex]) 
"arrival at, finish." 

0.99a. Prefixes 239 

1 ni- (wt-start for; -c-1 subj.; -wi-compl.) 

2 yini- (m-startfor; -w-2subj.; -wi-compl.) 

3 ni- (w^-start for; -wi-compl.) 

4 djini- (dji-4 subj . ; wt-start for ; -wi-compl.) 
i 'awi- ('o-i subj. ; m-start for; -wi-compl.) 

Dl ni-d- (wi-start for; -wi-compl.; -i'd-Dl subj.) 

D2 wo*- (wi-start for; -oh-D2 subj.; -wi-compl.) 

Plural: Prefix da-pl. to dual forms. 

3-3 yini- (yi-3 obj. ; wt-start for; -wi-compl.) 

2-i '{'ni- ('a-i obj.; m-start for; -w-2 subj.; -wi-compl.) 

4-i 'ajni- ('a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; m-start for; -wi-compl.) 

Plurals with indefinite object are of the type P3-i darii-. 

by 1 mc- (wi-start for; -wi-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 yi- (wi-start for; -m-compl. ; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 dji- (dji-l ag. ; w^-start for; -wi-compl.) 

by i 'i- ('a-i ag. ; m-start for; -wi-compl.) 

by D2 no-h- (wvstart for; -wi-compl.; -0&-D2 ag.) 

(3) by i bi'te-- (bi-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag.; wt-start for; -wi-compl.) 

i by 1 'awic- fa-i subj.; wi-start for; -wi-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

i by 2 'iwi- ('a-i subj.; wi-start for; -wi-compl. ; -w-2 ag.) 

i by 3 'i*- fa-i subj.; wvstart for; -wi-compl. ; -yi-3 ag.) 

i by 4 'a&ji- ('a-i subj. ; dji-4 ag. ; wvstart for; -wi-compl.) 

i by D2 'ano-h- ('a-i subj.; m-start for; -wi-compl.; -oh-T>2 ag.) 

•T (pf.) arrive . . .ing, bring . . ., finish . . .ing 

-b$-z (-bqs) hooplike, wheellike obj. moves, rolls 

-l-bfyz (-l-bqs) drive wagon, car; cause hooplike obj. to move, roll 

-mq-z (-mqs) sphere moves, rolls 

-o^*' (-dpi) eat (gen.) 

-£i* (-fih) extend in a line 

-wV (-nah) crawl (YMG 87) 

-gij {-gic) cut with blade 

•ya-l (-yal) roll eye 

-dzd (-dd'l) one person goes 

-dzid (-dzil) wake up 

-l-djq? (4-djqh) move stamping feet 

-tci-l (-tci'l) snow falls 

-16'Z (-16*8) lead one animal by rope 

-ttiz (-ttia) harden 

'a-wa^o-things . . . -JQ-d (-jg-l) be healthy 

Oa- 'a-theme. . . -T (pf.) lend . . . to . . . (YM 6) 

Oa- tei-uncertain. . .-kt-z (-kos) grasp, comprehend thoughts 

M- . . . 4-tV (-l-tih) persist, keep at . . . (YM 200) 

OUi-(< #i-over-wd-against)-(< 'a-theme). . .Mid (-t6il) fumble, feel 
amongst (YM 41) 

Otsd di-emit-'a-theme. . .-li-d (-IU) be bright, shiny; glitter with re- 
flected light (YM 31) 

OtSd #o-things. . . -jgd (-jg-l) be in good health, spirits 

idi-out. . . -T (pf.) carry . . . out 
2 tci-ni- 
3-3 t6vni- 

£c*i- out. . . -'&h (abs.) arm is sticking out 

Jdi-out. . . -tfyd (-tiol) lean out (of window, car) (YM 215) 

240 KAVAHO GRAMMAR I0.99a.-10.9_ 

fcH-out. . .-co*d (-col) drag out fabriclike obj. (WM) 
tdi-out. . . -tlij (-tlic) person falls out (of window, car) (YM 215) 
id£-out-'a-beyond . . . -l-dj-d (-l-dj-l) fight for survival (YM 48) 
fcji-out-xo-things. . . -'# (-*a-l) speak out, tell, divulge things 
Oltdi-ont. . .-'$ (-'d-J) divulge, communicate . . . with . . . (YM 5) 

10.99b. ni-(nd-)sta,Tt for continuative 

The conjugation of m-(w-)start for is found only with com- 
pounded prefixes; the inflective (nd-) is necessary because of pre- 
ceding prefixes which require it. The conjugation differs from that 
of (w4-)against in certain important respects. Like wa-(/fca-)back, 
(nd-) affects only the singular and dual forms. 

1 nic- (m-start for; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 (ni-)ni- (m-start for; [no-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3 nd- t ni- (m-start for; [nd-]) 

4 dji- (dji-4 subj.; m-start for; [nd-]) 
i 'd- ('a-i subj. ; m-start for; [nd-]) 

Dl ni-d- (m-start for; [nd-]; -t-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 rid'h- (m-start for; [nd-]; -oh-D2 subj.) 

3-3 yini- (yi-3 obj.; m-start for; [nd-]) 

3-i 'i- ('a-i obj.; m-start for; [nd-]) 

by 3 ne*- (m-start for; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

3 by 4 dji-- <2/i-3 subj. ; dji-4 ag. ; m-start for; [nd-]) 

(3) by i bi'fc- (bi-{3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; m-start for; [nd-]) 

Oi-(< 0-nd-against)nd-cust.. . .-'q-h (-'q-l) measure up to ... (YM 10) 
Oi-(< 0-nd-against)m-(< nd-back)nd- -again. . .-dd-h (inc.) (-dd-l) one 

person catches up again with . . . 
nd-- again. . . -T (inc.) start to . . . for again 
nd*-again. . . -d\-h (inc.) (-d\-l) start to eat again 
niki-(or nixi-)ni-(< nd-back)nd- -again. . .-dd-h (inc.) (-d&4) one person 

starts back home again 
nix6-(K ma^-home-nd-circle) . . . -dd*h (inc.) (-dd-l) one person starts 

for home in a circle, or completing circle 

OM- . . . -yarh (inc.) (-gd-l) one person finds, comes upon 

t66--(<L ^t-out-nd-back) . . . -dzi-d (inc.) (-dzil) wake up - 
3 tdSnddzi-d he is starting to wake up 
P3 Mfrda-dzi'd they are starting to wake up 
3-3 t66*yinidzi-d he is waking him up 
idi-out. . . T (inc.) start . . .ing . . . out, ... is starting to move out 
tdi-out . . . ~l~bq-8 (inc.) (-l-bqs) start to drive wagon, car out 
tdi-out-'a-theme . . .-l-ba-l (inc.) (-l-bal) hang curtainlike obj. out; pull 

... by force (as by hair, clothes) 
tdi-out-'a-theme. . .-l-dyh (inc.) (-l-di'l) survive but weakening, fight 

for survival 
id£-out-nd-cust -l-ni-h (cust.) (4-ni-l) stick head out and jerk back 

(YM 164) 
£d£-out-nd*-again. . . -dd-h (inc.) (*dd*l) one person starts out again 
01 tdi-out. . .-'a-h (inc.) (-'d-l) start to communicate ..., tell .. . (YM5) 
Ol Jdi-out-nd*-again. . .-*a*h (inc.) (-'d'l) start to speak out again, 

communicate . . . with . . . , tell . . . to . . . (WE) 














1 • T>rni 

P 3 

)1 . JZlKJl 














I0.100.-10.l00a. PREFIXES 241 

10.100. wi-end continuative 

there is . . .ing ... to end 

. . . is . . . ing ... to end 

... is setting, placing, putting . . . down 

Though ni-end is often combined with wi-start for, it is also a 
yi-continuative used with the present stem (10.103.). 

(ni-end; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 
(ni-end; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 
(ni-end; yi-cont.) 
(ni-end; dji-4= subj.; yi-cont.) 
(ni-end; 'a-i subj.; yi-cont.) 
(ni-end; yi-cont.; -id-Dl subj.) 
(ni-end; yi-cont.; -ok-T>2 subj.) 

nda- < m-end-rfa-pl. to dual forms and note: 

(ni-end; da-pi.; yi-cont.) 

(ni-end; da-pl. ; dji-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 

(ni-end; yi -3 obj.; yi-cont.) 

(ni-end; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 

(ni-end; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 

(ni-end; 'a-i obj.; yi-cont.) 

(ni-end; 'a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 

. . . T (pres.) set . . .down, place . . . , put. . . down, move ... to end 

ni' . . . -T (pres.) put ... on ground, floor 

10.100a. ni-ni-end start for continuative 

. . . ing is arriving 

... is arriving . . . ing 

... is arriving . . . ing . . . 

. . . is . . . ing . . . down, setting . . . down, placing . . . 

Prefix ni-end (pre-paradigmatic prefix) to regular forms of ni- 
start for (10.99.) and note: 

3 ni*- (ni-end; ni-start for) 

4 ndji- (ni-end ; d/i-4 subj. ; ni-start for) 
i niH- (ni-end; 'ct-i subj. ; ni-start for) 

Dl nni'd- (ni-end; ni-start for; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 nnoh- (ni-end; ni-start for; -oh-T>2 subj.) 
3-3 m- 


4-4 nixodji- (ni-end; #o-4 obj.; rf/i-4 subj.; ni-start for) 

1-i nirlic- (ni-end; 'a-i obj.; ni-start for; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i nidi- (ni-end; 'a-i obj.; ni-start for; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i niH- (ni-end; 'a-i obj.; ni-start for) 

4-i ni'£<5i- (ni-end; 'a-i obj.; a?i-4 subj.; ni-start for) 

(3) by i n&iYe-- (ni-end; 6i-[3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; ni-start for) 

-T (inc.) put, place, set . . . down 

-rii-h (inc.) (-riah) crawl 

-ge-h (inc.) (-goh). flow so far and stop; irrigate so far; plunge 

-yd'h (inc.) (-gd-l) one person arrives 

•l-tld-d (inc.) (-l-tlil) stop, halt (YM 215) 

'axa-. . . -zi-d (inc.) (-zil) rake together (YM 240) 

(ni-end; yi-3 obj.; ni-start for) 

3-3 yinini 

yini*- J- (yi-3 obj.; ni-end; ni-start for; -ni-compl.) 

242 KavaHo grammas 10.100a.-10.100b % 

Oa- . . . -rlfrh (inc.) (-riah) crawl up on game, stalk (YM 148) 

ni-end-'a-beyond. . . -gfrc (inc.) (-gic) aim (FH) 

tdi- . . . -fyh (inc.) (-^f*2) dodge . . . , slip out of (situation) 
t6i-. . .-ad'd (inc.) (sol) drive several out 
tdi-out-nd' -again- . . . -y6-d (inc.) (-yol) drive several out again 
tdi-out-nd*-. . .-so-d (inc.) (sol) drive several out again 

10.100b. m-end ni-perfective 

— ing has arrived at end 
. . . has . . . ed to end 

— has . . . ed ... to end 

When in ni-end is prefixed to the regular forms of ni-perfective 
(10.99a.), the following forms differ from the regular prefixes: 

ni'- I (wi-end; m-start for; -c-1 subj. ; -wi-compl.) 

2 nvni-ni- \ 

ni-ni I ( m " en d; m-start for; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

,.* ." > (ni-end; dfi-4 subj.; ni-start for; -ni-compl.) 

P3-3 ndayini- 1 , . , , . .«,. 

dayinini-)^ nt ' end; ^-V 1 -'* V 1 '^ obj.; m-start for; -m-compl.) 

1-i nirii- (ni-end; 'a-i obj.; ni-start for; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2-i ni'i-ni- (ni-end; 'a-i obj.; m-start for; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3-i nirii- (m-end; 'a-i obj,; m-start for; -ni-compl.) 

by 1 ninic- (ni-end; m-start for; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 
by 3 nmi- *j 

ni-- > (ni-end; ni-start for; -ni-compl.; -yi-S ag.) 
ne-- J 

4 by 3 cbjine*- (rf/i-4 subj. ; ni-end ; ni-start for; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 

-T (pf.) set, place, put . . . down 

-'<£ (abs.) lie coiled 

-l-bdz (-l-bqs) park car, bring wagon to stop (YM 23) 

-l-td-z (-l-fas) cut fine, delicately (WE) 

-ruj, (-n$'l) move camp 

-nV (-riah) crawl 

•yd (-gd'l) one person goes 

~ge*d (-gol) dig with implement 

-go' (-goh) plunge, irrigate (YM 89) 

-l-Ue? (-l-He-l) cool to normal 

-8$ (-84-1) mature, grow up (YM 175) 

Dl ninini'lz$ we are growing, have grown up 
-dzdh (-dd-l) one person goes 
-ja-j (-jac) erode, wear away (YM 236) 
-c6-j (-coc) lay parallel obj. (YM 179) 
•l-tcq,-' (4-tcf-l) follow scent 
-l-tlah (4-tlil) stop, hinder, halt (YMG 89, YM 215) 

'aara-together . . . -zi'd (-zil) rake together 
'axi- . . . -l-tcq)-' (-1-tcH) chase each other (YM 84) 
'aa;i-(< 'axi-together-nd-against). . *-l-'4 (-l-'q-l) balance, be eq 
volume (YM 14) 

10.100b.-10.101. prefixes 243 

Oa- . . .-J-'F (-l-'i'l) slip ... to .. . (YM 102) 

Oa* . . . -nV {-riah) crawl up on . . . (game after stalking) (YM 148) 

nd-back-'aai-together. . .-l-tcq-" (4-tcH) two run back together 

nd-#*-home-'a-theme. . . 4-tcq-' (44c6-l) two return home together 

id^-out. . . -fy* (-fy'l) dodge out 

tdi-out . . . 4-ne' (4-nH) stick head out and jerk back (YM 164) 

t6i-out. . . -yo-d (~yol) drive several out 

t6i-out. . . 4cq-* (-tcil) drive one out 

tdi-oxit. . . 4\ (abs.) flow out 

10.100c. m-ni-get stuck continuative 

A compound prefix ni-ni- seems to be correlative with dini-get 
stuck (10.89a.), changes coming about because of the ability of ni- 
to combine with other ni-s in a manner different from di- : 

1 ne-c- 

2 nini-y tie-- 

3 ne- 

4 djine*- 

Dl ni-d-y ne-d- 
D2 no-h- 
3-3 yine-- 
3-i 'ane-- 
4-i djirie*- 
(3) by i bVtine'- 

Oa- wd-back-'a-beyond. . . -Z-'q*^ (inc.) (4-'q-l) liquid returns to normal 


Oi-(< O-nd-against) 4-'q*h (inc.) (4-'q'l) measure liquid 

0$-(< 0-nd-against)*a-i. . ,4-'q-h (inc.) (4-^q'l) measure (with hand, 

foot, tape), fit to . . . 
Oi-(< O-nd-against). . . -dZf (pres.) (-dfyl) be interested in . . . (YM 54) 
Oi-(<C O-wd-againstJnd-cust.-'a-i. . ,4-^q-h (cust.) (4-'q*l) measure cust. 

(YM 10) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against )nd-cust.. . .-dfyh (cust.) (-dlj-l) be interested in . . . 

cust. (YM 54) 
wo-about-'a-beyond. . . -c4'h (inc.) (-cah) string warp 

Dl narli'lji'h 
#a-out-*a-beyond. . .-l-n4*h (4-nah) wear out . . .ing 
etei-away. . .sol (inc.) (sol) blow on 

tdi-out. . . 4-ne J (4-ni-l) stick head out and jerk it back (YM 164) 
t6i~out. . . -yo-d (inc.) (-yol) drive several to end (away from corral after 

leaving gate) (FH) 
t6i~. . . 44cfrh (44c44) drive one out; two are moving chasing (YM 33) 

10.101. yd- with verbs of speaking 

yd- with verbs of speaking is conjugated like 'a-thus with y in- 
stead of : initial, in the progressive, continuative, and yi-perfective 
(10.80, 10.80b, 10.104). The following changes oocur in yi-perf ective : 

yMni- J ( yd ~ ; ^-P r °S- 5 ' n ' 2 8ub J- ; -ni-oompl.) 
Dl ydi-d- (yd-; yi-prog.; -ni-compl. ; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 ydo-- (yd-; yi-prog. ; -oh-D2 subj.; -ni-oompl.) 




-l-tih (prog.) speak, converse 
-l-ti' (pres.) speak, converse 
-l-ti' (pf.) speak, converse 

10,102. ^i-progressive 

there is progressive . . . ing 
. . . is . . . ing progressively 
progressive . . . ing is being caused 
. . . is . . . moving along . . . ing 

is . . . ing . . . along 

... is going along . . . ing ... 

... is causing . . . to . . . progressively 

... is causing ... to it progressively 

... is going along causing ... to ... it 

The progressive is one of the basic conjugations. It may be used 
with the progressive stem of almost every verb. It occasionally has 
other prefixes compounded with yi-, but even then has only slight 
variations of the pattern. The vowel -o*- of the third persons is 
characteristic and persistent in compounds. 

Plural progressive forms, though possible as shown, are rarely 
used, the prolongative (10.91.) being preferred. 



2/i-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 



2/i-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 






dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.) 



'a-i subj.; yi-prog.) 



l^-prog.; -id-Dl subj.) 



[yi-prog.; -oft-D2 subj.) 



[da -pi.; 2/t-prog. ; -vd-Dl subj.) 

P2 dao-h- 

[aa-pl.; yi-prog. ; -oh-T>2 subj.) 


dei-y dai- 

aa-pl.; y^-prog.) 



[da-pL ; dji-4: subj. ; yi-prog.) 



[aa-pl. ; 'a-i subj . ; yi-prog.) 



[ni-2 obj.; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 



[xoA obj.; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 



ci-\ obj.; yi-prog.) 



\yi-Z 6b\.; yi-prog.) 



yi-Z obj.; yi-Z obj.; yi-prog.) 



'a-i obj. ; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 



'a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -w-2 subj.) 



'a-i obj.; yi-prog.) 



'a-i obj.; dji-± subj.; yi-prog.) 



'a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -ia*-Dl subj.) 



'a-i obj.; yi-prog. ; -oh-T>2 subj.) 



da-p\.; *a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.) 

3 by 3 

yiyo-- { 

yi-3 subj.; yi-prog.; -yi-3 ag.) 

(3) by 3 bo- ( 

6i-[3] subj.; yi-prog.; -yi-3 ag.) 

(3) by i 

bi'to- ( 

6i-[3] subj.; y adi-i ag.; yi-prog.) 



there is . . . ing 

... is ... ing 

. . . is . . . ing . . . 




is causing . 
is causing 
is causing 

. to 
. to . 


The oontinuative (called imperfective by other writers) may be 
used under proper circumstances with the momentary, present, or 
inceptive stem, yi-continuative is used with the inceptive stem 
when it denotes an action or procedure in which the subject does not 
move through space. 















2 by 3 

3 by 3 
(3) by 3 





J a- 



P2 dah- f daoh 
P3 dai- t dei 
P4 dadji- 
Pi da'a- 
3-1 ci- 
3-2 ni- 
3-3 yi- 








y adji- 





[yi-cont.; -c-1 Bubj.) 
lyi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 

dji-4: subj.; yi-cont.) 
['a-subj.; yi-cont.) 
yi-cont,; -id-Dl subj.) 
[yi-cont.; -o/i-D2 subj.) 
(do-pl.; yi-cont. ; -i*d-Dl subj.) 
^-(da-pl.; yi-cont. ; -oh-T)2 subj.) 
(da-pi.; yi-cont.) 
(aa-pl. ; dji-4: subj. ; yi-cont.) 
[da-pl.; 'a-i subj.; yi-cont.) 
(ci-1 obj.; yi-cont.) 
[ni-2 obj.; yi-cont.) 
(yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.) 
(#o-4 obj.; yi-cont.) 
('a-i obj.; yi-cont.) 

(da-pl. ; yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.; -6h-T>2 subj.) 
[da-pi.; yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.) 
[yi-3 obj.; yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.) 
'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 
'a-i obj.; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 
'a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 
'a-i obj.; «i-cont.: -i*d-Dl subi 


(3) by i oi'i 
Dl by 3 

A V^j., WJV-7T DUWj., ^WViiU./ 

-i obj.; yi-cont.; -i*d-Dl subj.) 
-i obj.; yi-cont.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 
-pi.; 'a-i obj.; d?i-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 
■1 subj.; yi-cont.; -yi-3 ag.) 
y . vv -2 subj.; yi-cont.; -yi-3 ag.) 
(yi-3 subj.; yi-cont.; -yi-3 ag.) 
(6i-[3] subj.; yi-cont.; -yi-3 ag.) 
[6i-[3] subj.; *odi-i ag.; yi-cont.) 





Dl by 31 

J- mx%- (mxi-Dl, D2 subj.; yi-cont.; -yi-3 ag.) 

A short list of stems used with yi-continuative follows ; note that 
they are verbs of action rather than verbs of motion. 

-bi-] (pres.) (-bic) boil, 

-l-b&j (pres.) (-l-bic) cause boiling 

-bi] (pres.) (-bic) braid, twill 

-diz (pres.) (-die) spin, twist one element on another 

-y$h (pres.) (-yi'l) (irregular see 8.97.) eat (gen.) 

-giz (pres.) (-gis) turn, twist as pivot, screw 

4-yal (mom.) (4-yal) animal eats meat; tear meat from bone 

-yj-h (mom., inc.) (-yi'l) (irregular see 8.97.) eat (gen.) 

4-jic (pres.) (4-jic) dance 


246 NAVAHO GBAMMAK 10. 103.-10. 10*- 

-tcah (pres.) (-tcah) cry, weep 

•l-tcin (pres.) (-I4c{-1) give off odor, have odor, smell 

•l-tci (pres.) (-l-tci'l) cause bearing down, pressing; give birth to, ^ e 

born, originate 
-l-tcoj (pres.) (-l-tcoc) eat herblike substance (as grass, hay, greens) 
-l-tcQ-h (mom., inc.) (-l-tcq-l) spoil, ruin, mar, wreck, disfigure 
-tcxah (pres.) (-tcxah) scream 
-i-tdal (pres.) (-ht6al) lap up 

Mid (pres.) (-t6il) move hand quickly, scratch with hand, paw 
•le^h (pres.) (-U'l) become, change 
~dl6'h (pres.) {-dloh) laugh 

•dlo-h (pres.) {-did -l) animate obj. becomes very cold, freezes, dies of co*d 
-ttoh (pres.) (-tio-l) weave, tie, intertwine 

10.104. yt-perfeotive 

, has been . . . ing 
. has been causing . . . ing 
. has been causing . . . to . . . 
, has been . . . ing . . . 
has been causing ... to ... it 

2/i-perfective is the progressive completive, corresponding to the 
progressive and continuative. It differs from the m-perfective in 
that it does not indicate the finish of the action, or the arrival at a 
goal. It differs from the si-perfective in not indicating a state that 
has been brought about. 

(j/i-prog. ; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

(yvprog.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

(yt-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

(dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

fa-i subj. ; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

(j/t-prog. ; -ni-compl.; d'd-Dl subj.) 

(yi-prog.; -oft-D2subj. -nl=eompl.;) 

(da-pl.; yt-prog.; -ni-compl.; -t*(f=Dl subj.) 

(da-pl.; 2/i-prog.; •oh-T>2 subj.; -ni-c0mpl.) 

(aa-pl.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

(yi-Z obj. ; yi-pvog. ; -ni-compl.) 

('a-i subj.; yi-Z obj.; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

fa-i obj.; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

('a-i obj.; yt-prog. ; -«,-2 subj.; -«i-oompl.) 

fa-i obj.; j/i-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

fa-i obj. ; dji-4 subj. ; yt-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

('a-i obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -i'd-T>l subj.) 

('a-i obj.; yi-prog* ; -oh-T>2 subj. -ni-compl.) 

(yi-Z obj.; yi-Z obj.; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

(aa-pl. ; yi-Z obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

(yt-prog. ; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

(yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

(dji-4: ag. ; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

foot-i ag. ; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

(yi-Z subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

(yi-Z subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -n-2 ag.) 

(yi-Z subj. ; yi-pvog. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 

(djiA subj.; yi-pvog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

(bi-[Z] subj.; y^-prog. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 









































by 1 


by 3 


by 4 


by i 


3 by 1 


3 by 2 


3 by 3 


4 by 3 


(3) by 3 bo- 

10.104. PREFIXES 247 

(3) by i MYo*- (fei-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag.; 3/t-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

3 by D2 yo-h- (yi-3 subj.; ^-prog.; -ni-compl.; -oA-D2 ag.) 

1 by 3 Co- (ci-l subj.; ^-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

2 by 3 no-- (nt-2 subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

3 by 4 d?o- (dji-* ag.; yi-3 subj.; ^-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

4 by 3 xo-~ (xo-4: subj.; ^t-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

1)1 by 3 \ nxo-- (nxi-Dl, D2 subj. ; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl. ; -2/*-3 ag.) 
D2 by 3} 

i by 1 Vc- (*a-i subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

i by 3 'o- ('o-i subj.; yvprog.; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 

i by 4 W?o- fa-i subj. ; d?t-4 ag. ; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

i by D2 V/&- (Vi subj.; t/i-prog.; -ni-compl.; -oft-D2 ag.) 

In the following stem list note that the perfective stems corre- 
spond with the stems given in 10.103. for ^-continuative— they are 
stems denoting action rather than motion, although stems of 
motion may be used with yi-perfective if they denote progressive 
oompletive motion. 

-T (pf.) . . .ing . . . has progressed 

-l-bfyz (-l-bqs) drive wagon, car; roll hooplike obj.; cause hooplike, 

wheellike obj. to roll 
~l-b6'j (-l-bic) boil . . . ; cause to boil 
-of (-be*l) pick berries, fruit 
•dq' (-dpi) be eaten (gen.) 
-de*' (-dah) clean 
-dfrl (-dil) eat berries, pollen 
-nV (-Hah) crawl 

-yq-' (~yi-l) (irregular see 8.97.) eat (gen.) 
-yol (-yol) breathe, blow 
-gcd (-gol) dig with implement 
-l-Uaz (-l-ttas) make cold 
-Ua-z (-Mas) straighten stiff obj . 
-yaz (-yas) mark with teeth, tear with teeth 
-yaj (-yac) nibble 

-l-yal (4-yal) animal eats ; tear meat from bone 
4-ya-l (4-yal) club, hit with club 
-ya*d (-yal) shake flexible container 
4-xa-l (4-xal) club ; cause clublike obj. to move 
-l-zol (-l-zol) blow hard 
-dzi'* (-dzih) be left, remain 
-tse*d (-tsil) pound, beat with hammerlike obj.; hammer 

'o-theme . . . -dlfr' (-dlf-l) drink, be a drinker (YM 54) 
'a-self-AJi- . . . -l-tc^" (4-tci'l) masturbate self (YM 37) 

by 1 ' atte*ctc4*' i 

by 2 "dM-nilt^ 

di- 4-dlfy'* {-dl('l) be drunk, be made to drink 

Ue-(< A&-sever)-'a-theme. . .-'ah {-"al) take hair down (YM 16) 

xa-. . .-'<£ (-'d-l) pull one tooth, take one . . . out (as dollar from bank, 


1 xdi'4, I pulled one tooth 

2 xand'4 you pulled one 
3-3 xdi^4 h e pulled one 

xa- . . . -nil (-nil) pull several teeth; take pi. obj. out 
#a-out-'a-theme. . .4-xq,-' (4-xfyl) snore 
£di-out-nd*-again-#o-things. . .-/$ (-td-l) speak out again (BS) 

248 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.105.-10. 105b, 

10.105. yi-cessative 

Two prefixes, yi-cessative and -yi-repetitive aspect have many 
overlapping forms. The close relationship between these two pre- 
fixes is understandable since, in order to repeat a motion or action, 
it must be stopped. 

yt-cessative may also be confused with ^-repetitive action, 
especially when xi- > yi- as it frequently does in combination with 
other prefixes, yi-cessative may be distinguished from -yi-repetitive 
aspect by the second person perfective cessative (yini- instead of 
yi*-), by some forms with 'a-indefinite pronoun, and by some future 
forms, -yi-repetitive aspect has ^-perfective or yi-perfective, 
whereas yi-cessative has -yi-perfective cessative (Young and Morgan 
do not differentiate these). 

10.105a. yi-pause future cessative 

. . . ing will pause 
. . . will pause . . . ing 
. . . will pause . . . ing . . . 

Prefix yi-cessative to regular future forms (10.87.) and note: 

i H-do-- (V»-i subj. ; yi-cess. ; di-fut. ; yi-prog.) 

3-3 yvdo'- (yi-3 obj.; yt-cess.; di-fut.; yi-prog.) 

't-(< 'a-beyond-yi-cess.) . . . -l-yoc be put to sleep 

net- . . . -l-gah rub white on, whiten 

nM- . . . -l-tsoh rub yellow on, make yellow 

nii- . . . 4-jt'l rub black on 

nil- . . . -l-tcih rub red on 

nii- . . . -l-tiic rub blue on 

dah- . . .tcih flash red (YM 34) 

2/a-tilt . . . -l-tal dash off, start running fast (YM 187) 

ya-ti\t. . . -zil pour (YM 187) 

Olcidji xadah Vi-(< 'a-beyond-'a-i-j/t-eess.) . . . -l-nvl drop one bomb on 

(YM 165) 
OJ6i--(< Mi-over-yi-cess.) . . . -zil cover by raking over . . . (YM 240) 
Ozd #£-(< Z&-over-nd-against)cfa*- . . . -nih choke, strangle with hands 

(YM 157) 

10.105b. t/t-pause inceptive cessative 

. . . ing starts to pause 

... is starting to pause . . . ing 

... is starting to pause . . . ing . . . 

The prefixes yi-continuative-t/i-cessative form the inceptive 
cessative conjugation, meaning "start to pause." The prefixes are 
used with the inceptive cessative stem, often, but not always, the 
same as the inceptive stem. 

1 yi-c- (yi-cont.; yi-cea&.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 yv- {yi-cont.; yi-cees.; -n-2subj.) 

3 yi-- (yi-cont.; yi-cees.) 

4 dji-- (dji-4 subj.; yi-cont.; yi-cees.) 
i V- fa-i subj.; yi-cont.; yi-cesa.) 


10.105b.-10.105c. prefixes 249 

Dl yi'd- (yi-cont.; yi-cess.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 yo'h- (yi-cont.; yi-cess.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Plural: Prefix da-pl. to dual forms and note: 

PI yidayi-d- (yi-3 obj. ; da-pl. ; yi-cont. ; yi-cess. ; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

P2 yidayo-h- (yi-3 obj.; da-ph; yi-cont.; yi-cess.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

P3 da-- (da-pl.; yi-cont.; yi-cess.) 

P4 yidadji-- (yi-3 obj. ; cto-pl. ; dji-4 subj. ; yi-cont. ; yi-cess.) 

3-3 yiyv- (yi-3 obj.; yi-cont.; yi-cess.) 

'3-3 yide-- (yi-3 obj.; da-pl.; yi-cont.; yi-cess.) 

1-i \-c- (*a-i obj.; yi-cont.; yi-cess.; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i V- ('a-i obj.; yi-cont.; yi-cess.; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i H'- fa-i obj.; yi-cont.; yi-cess.) 

4-i 'adji-- ('a-i obj. ; d*yi-4 subj. ; yi-cont. ; yi-cess.) 

-T (inc. cess.) pause . . .ing . . . 

-da* (~da*l) one person sits 

-l-di-h (4-ddh) clean, clear away 

-die (-die) roll in spiral; turn element on itself 

-l-di8 (-l-dia) give a twist, wrap up (YM 50) 

-l-ta-l (-l-tal) kick; move round obj. forcefully 

-l-yd-c (-l-yac) bite 

-l-yi-j (-l-yic) crouch 

-zoh (-zoh) mark, scratch (YM 244) 

-l-tsih (-1-tsH) (cess, only) see (YM 219) 

-ci-h (-d-l) dye black (YM 178) 

-dji (-dji'l) move black; black obj. (speck) moves 

-l-tci'h (-l-tcih) redden, dye red 

'ofi-suffering-wd-cust -l-'i-h (cust.) (-l-'i'l) injure, harm (YM 133) 

'd-thus-nd-back-xo-things. . .-tj-h (cust.) (-fyl) quit, back out cust. 
(YM 202) 

'd-thus-ni-(< nd-back)nd-cust -Z-'ffe (cust.) (-l-'j-l) repair (YM 129) 

"dko nd-cust 4-*yh (cust.) (-l-'yl) make it correctly (YM 129) 

Od y acdja? nd'a-theme. . .-l-'j-h (inc. cess.) (-l-'i'l) give ... a chance 

(YM 132) 
Ota- ??-(< nd-cust.). . .-l-nih (cust.) (-l-nih) there is an epidemic (YM 

nd-cust -l-na'h (cust.) (-l-na'l) generate electricity (YM 145) 

nd-cust. . . . -dzoh (cust.) (-dzoh) mark, scratch (YM 244) 
ya-tilt. . . -zi-d (inc. cess.) (-zil) pour (YM 240) 
ya-tilt. . . -l-ta-l (-l-tal) start off running fast, dash off (YM 187) 
&{-(< H-touching-wd-against )ni-end ... -co-c (inc.cess.) (-coc) lay par- 
allel obj. side by side (YM 180) 
AJi-over. . . -zi*d (inc.cess.) (-zil) cover by raking over . . . (YM 240) 
01 nd-around. . . -die (inc.cess.) (-die) wrap up . . . (YM 50) 
1 nH-sdis I am wrapping it up 
3-3 ndyi-dia he is wrapping it up 

10.105c. yi-pause perfective cessative 

. . . ing has paused, stopped 
. . . has paused, stopped . . . ing 
has paused, stopped . . . ing . . . 

The forms of the perfective cessative are the same as those of the 
inceptive cessative (10.105b.) with a few exceptions. The perfective 
cessative is prefixed to the perfective stem. 

250 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.105o.-10.106a. 

1 yi-- (yt-prog.; -c-1 subj.; yi-ceBB.) 

2 yini- (yt-prog.; -n-2 subj.; y^-cess.) 

2-i Hni- fa-i obj.; 2/t-prog.; -n-2 subj.; 2^-cess.) 

3-3 yi-yi- (yi-3 obj.; yt-prog. ; 2/t-cess.) 

by 1 yvc- (yi-prog. ; yi-cess.; -c-1 ag.) 

-dis (-di$) spin, twist spirally 

-i£$ (-^£*2) move camp 

-flrc^ (~9Qh) whiten 

•ge-d (-gol) dig with implement, shovel dirt 

-gvj (-gic) slice, cut with blade 

-had (-leal) sew 

•I-Jcq' (-l-kg-l) smooth 

-l-ya*j (-l-yac) bite 

-l-ye-j (l-yic) stoop over, crouch 

4-tsq (-l-tsi-l) see (YM 219) 

-dji'' (-djf-l) be black, move as black line, speck 

-tc%-h (abs.) know how to . . . (YM 36) 

-l-dld^ (-l-dlf-l) make . . . drink, make . . . drunk; cause to drink 

dah- . . . -tci-' (-tcih) flash red (YM 34) 

ya-tilt. . .4-td-l (-l-tal) dash off running, start running fast (YM 187) 

2 yeiniltd'l you have dashed off 

3 ya-ltd-l he has dashed off 
ya-tilt. . . -zi-d (-zil) pour (YM 240) 

Ofti-ovet. . . -zi-d (-zil) cover by raking over. . . (YM 240) 

2 biJSi-nisi'd you have covered it by raking . . . over it 
Ofti-. . . -l-tci (-l-tci-l) have nightmare (YM 36) 

10.106. Repetitive 

Two prefixes indicate the repetitive: ^-repetitive action or 
motion (abbreviated ""), and -yt-repetitive aspect (abbrevi- 
ated "rep.asp."). Pre-paradigmatic xi- means "move repeatedly" 
whereas -yi- means "start from repeatedly, start for repeatedly." 
Either may occur without the other, or they may be used together. 
Since -yi -repetitive aspect does not occur without another conju- 
gated prefix, it is treated as an inflectional prefix. 

Both repetitive prefixes are composed of unstable sounds, and 
they have many overlapping forms, both with each other and with 
other combinations of t/i-prefixes. They are therefore considered 
separately to differentiate the changes occurring with them, and to 
indicate the effects of their respective positions. They correspond to 
the compound prefixes ni-end-m-start for, <fc'-7&tf-prolongative, nd- 
(nd-) back, customary, and j/i-m'-reciprocal effect. 

10.106a. -yi-repetitive aspect future 

. . . ing will take place repeatedly 
. . . will repeatedly . . . 
. . . will repeatedly ... it 

The order of the future repetitive aspect prefixes is eK-future-t/i- 
progressive-yi-repetitive aspect; they contract into forms that 
match the future forms (10.87.) with diy- instead of d initial. A few 

10.106a.-10.106c. PREFIXES 251 

examples only will be given to show the position of the elements in 
the prefix complex, the others being quite regular. 

4 djidiyo'- (dji-l subj.; di-fat.; yt-prog.; -t^-rep.asp.) 
3-3 yidiyo-- (yi-% obj.; di-fut.; 2/i-prog. ; -#i-rep.asp.) 
(3) by i bidi^o-- (6i-[3] subj.; di-fut.; 'ct-i ag.; yt-prog. ; -t^-rep.asp.) 

-T (fut.) . . .ing will take place rep. 

'a-beyond-s-(< dzvaway). . .-T (fut.) throw . . . rep.; move . . .beyond 

rep. • 

'£-(< ' . .-T (fut.) carry . . . rep.; load . . . 

wa-about-ao-place. . . -na*l universe moves 

ni-end. . . -l-ni-l cut with ax into regular sized pieces 

nt-end-ao-place. . .-l-dlal plow (YM 52) 

ni- — -jih saw wood 

a?a-out. . . -tsxie jerk, whip 

#a-out-na*-again-z-(< dzt-away). . ,-sih pointed obj. moves out away 

swiftly again * 

xa-xo- . . . -l-ti'l rain . . . -ni'l pound vigorously 
a^< e&t-away) . . . -tqc flip away 
a?;-(< dzt-away) . . . -l-xal club, hit with club 

10.106b. -(yi)-repetitive aspect continuative 

... is repeatedly . . . ing 
... is repeatedly . . . ing . . . 

The continuative repetitive aspect differs from the inceptive 
cessative (yi-yi-) (10.105b.) in the following forms: 

2-i Hyi- ('a-i obj.; yi~cont.; -yi-rep.asp.; -n-2 subj.) 

Dl-i Hyi-d- fa-i obj.; yi-cont.; -yi-rep.asp.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2-i Hyoh- fa-i obj. ^t-cont.; -^-rep.asp.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

(3) by i bi'ti-- (bi-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag.; yi-cont.; -^-rep.asp.) 

-T (mom., pres., inc.) move . . . rep. 
-8th (mom.) (sih) make mistake, err rep. 
-djih (mom.) (-dji-l) saw wood (YM 106) 

na-about. . . -l-te - (mom. pres.) (4-te-l) carry sticklike obj. 

10.106c. -^i-repetitive aspect yi-perfective 

. . . has been taking place repeatedly 
. . . has been . . . ing repeatedly 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . repeatedly 

The conjugation of -2/i-repetitive aspect 2/i-perfective has some 
forms exactly like those of yi-perf ective : 4, 3-3, 1-i, 3-i, and all 
duals (10.104.). The chief difference is in the lengthening of the 
vowel because of contraction. 

1 yf>'- (3/*-prog.; -yi-rep.asp.; -c 1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 yi-ni- (j^-prog.; -yt-rep.asp.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3 yi-- (^-prog.; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.) 

i *ayi-- ('a-isubj.; yi-prog.; -yt-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.) 

2-i H-yini- fa-i obj.; yt-prog.; -2/i-rep.asp. ; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

252 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.106c.-10.107. 

1 by i cVtiyo** (ci~\ subj.; J adi~i ag. ; yi-prog. ; -yi-rep.asp, ; -ni-compl.) 

3 by 1 yi*c- (yi-3 subj.; yi-ptog.; -£/i-rep.asp.; -wi-compl. -c-1 ag.) 

3 by 2 yi'- (s/i-3 subj.; yi-prog. ; -yi-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.; -n-2 ag.) 

3 by 3 yiyi-~ (?/i-3 subj.; t/i-prog. ; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

3 by 4 dji-- (?/i-3 subj.; d?i-4 ag.; yi-prog.; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.) 

-l-ka-l (-l-lcal) nail; cause solid obj. to hit . . . rep. 
-tse*d (-tail) pound, hit with hammer, mallet 
•l-dlfy* (-dli'l) be made drunk 

'a-beyond. . . -z#*' (-zq-l) beat spouse (YM 234) 
'd-thus. . .-la- (-WI) do, make, build, construct . . . rep. 
'd-thus. . .-l-yct- (-l-ni-l) make, construct, build . . . 
Oi- '*-(< 'a-beyond-a; . .-«<£•' (si'l) feed, force food into . . . 
(YM 182, FH) 

10.106d. -yi-repetitive aspect si-perfective 

. . . ing has repeatedly taken place 
. . . has repeatedly * . . ed 
. . . has repeatedly . . . ed ... 

The forms resulting from the combination of si-perfective and 
-^-repetitive aspect are comparable with those of dt-start from -si- 
perfective (10.88c.) with y instead of d initial, the changes noted 
below being due to the instability of yi- as compared with di-. 

azt'- I (dji-& subj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.) 

(tZZ'Z- j 

i Hy6- fa-i subj. ; si-pf. ; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.) 

P4 dadzi-- (da-p\. ; dji-4 subj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.) 

Pi da$i*- (da-pl.; 'a-i subj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.) 

3-3 yiye-z- (yi-3 obj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.) 

by 1 yis- (si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

Y y e . 8 ~ l (ai-pf.; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3ag.) 
yi'8- J 

i by 6 aye-s- 1 ^ ^ subj.; si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl.; -t/i-3 ag.) 

%'S- J 

i by D2 'ayo-k- ('a-i subj. ; si-pf. ; -yi-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl. ; -oh-D2 ag.) 

10.107. yi- with "see" continuative 

The following paradigm is given in full because the stem -{-l 
"look, see, get into position to see" seems to have a prefix, so far 
undetermined, in addition to the regular aspective prefixes. This 
element results in -o- of the third persons, behaves like -ni- in 
others, as in the second person. The compound forms, <fo'-continua 
tive, m'-continuative, and the perfectives seem to contain {na- 
against, which is not evident in the paradigm here given (unless it b< 
the undetermined element). In short, this seems like a mixed, oj 
irregular conjugation (cp. YM 100-1). 

1 yic- 

2 yini- 

3 yo~ 

4 djo'- 
Dl yi-d~ 


























































-'j (pres.) i-'i'l) see, look at, get glance into position, focus on 

10.108, yi-ni-h&ve . . . like, be . . .ed like . . . static 

. . . has a . . . like-. . . 

The following conjugation may be used with the -I- form of any 
monosyllabic noun as a stem (cp. 4.21.) : 

1 yinic- 

2 yini- 

3 yi : 

4 dj6'- 
Dl yini-d- 
T>2 yinoh- 
PI deini'd- 
P2 deinoh- 
P3 da- 
P4 dadjo*- 

cclc yiltsi-'' he has a head like a bear 
djan yinictdah I have a hat like John's 

yilts^ she is pregnant (-tag abdomen) (cp. -l-tsq-l be pregnant) (YM 219) 

10.109. yt-tti-change continuative 

The prefix combination yi-ni- seems to mean something like 
"change takes place." The future of the form yidiyex- probably 
overlaps that of -yi-repetitive aspect future (10.106a). Since the 
meaning is not clear the conjugations are given without analysis : 

254 NAVAH0 GRAMMAR 10.109.-10.109a. 

1 ymic- 


yoc- J 

>nvd- 1 


3 yo-, yo- 

4 d?o- 
Dl yi/ni't 

D2 yinoh-\ 

yo-h- J 
3 by 1 yo-c- 
3 by 3 yo- 
3 by 4 djo-- 

•l-yi (pres.) (-l-ye-l) be called, be named . . . 
-dty (pres.) (~dl\-l) believe 

Ox" ...-'»•& (pres.) (-'<H) (3 only) be discontented, have change of 

1 cv' yc'a-h I am discontented 
ico-useful. . . •'{ (pres.) (-*f I) be useful 
tco-useful. . . -l-'i (pres.) (-l-^'l) use, put to use 

10.109a. yi-ni-ch&nge $i-perfective 

The si-perfective of yi-ni- is formed by prefixing yi- to the regular 
$i-perfectives (10.117.), and note: 

3 yo'Z- 

4 dzo-z- 1 



Dl yiso'd* 1 
yisi-d- J 
D2 ywo«- 
3-3 yiyo-z- 
by D2 yiso'h- 
3 by 3 yo-tf- 1 
2/o •*- J 
(3) by i bVto'8- 

•l-ye y {-l-ye-l) be called, have the name . . . (NT 369:27) 

-l-tdj-' (-l-t6i) winnow (FH) 

-dlqd (-dlq-l) believe (YM 51, 92; FH) 

Oa- . .. -b4 {-bj'l) (3 only) lose at gambling (YM 28) 

1 cao-b$ I lost to ... at gambling 
Oa- ... -l-b4 (-l-tyl) win at gambling (YM 28) 

1 &a* yisilb^ I won it from him 
Oa- . . . -nah (-nah) forget about (YM 147) 

'd*-(< 'd-thus-si-harm) . . . -tyd (-tyl) quit, back out, surrender (YM 202 
06' #o-things — -$j*d (-ty-l) know things (YM 175) . 
Oi-(< O-nd-against):r0-things. . .-sq? (-sqh) miss..., find ... gon 
(YM 175) 

3-3 yixo'sq' he found him gone 

Dl bixosi-lzq' we found him gone 
Ja-. . ,-nv' (-nih) mix (as dough, mortar) (YM 156) 
W xwi--(< a?o-things-*i-harm) . . ,-nt*' (-nih) suffer, get hurt (YM I f>S 

10*109a.-10.1l0. PREilXES %&b 

nd- . . . -lean (-kfyl) beg, request (YMG 92) 

3 by 1 n&isi&kan I begged him 
nd- . . . -yd-j (-yac) eat, tear, wear away (NT 78 : 1) 
Oyd . . . -yd (-gd'l) pasa . . . moving; miss . . . while passing (FH) 
coi'-, cdi-{< co-si-haxm) . . ,-l-te' (-l-ttl) acquire (YM 197) 

1 cdisMfe\ coi'S&te* I acquired it 
teoi-useful. . .-l-'i'd (-l-'rl) be useful, use (YM 103) 

1 tcoisiPi'd I used it 

3 tco-z^'d it is useful 
3-3 tco'8*i'd he used it 
/&-(< Z&-sever-wd-against) . . .-rlo* (-Hah) become untied (FH) 

3 Heo-srla* it got untied 

10.110, yfc-m-doubtful destination continuative 

there is doubt about reaching a goal . . . ing 
... is trying to reach goal . . .ing 

The prefix combination yi-ni-, designated as "doubtful destina- 
tion/' is distinct from ^'-m-reciprocal effect (10.111, lO.llld.) 
although the two are often confused by the Navaho. At first glance 
yt-m'-reciprocal effect may seem to have the progressive-continua- 
tive forms, 2/£-m-doubtful destination, absolute or inceptive forms, 
so that we might interpret them as one prefix combination, differing 
in the two systems. Both, however, have st-perfectives with different 
conjugations, and they react differently to the same tests — third 
persons, for instance — so that it has been deemed best to consider 
them as separate prefixes, each with its own conjugation. 

yi-wf -doubtful destination is explained as "trying to make it," 
"it" being a definite target, and the interpreters explain further, 
"you don't know if the subject will reach the target or not." It con- 
trasts with 'a-beyond in implying a definite goal, with wi-start for 
in implying doubt as to whether the goal will be reached or not; 
with dzi-away which indicates no doubt — "you know the object will 
hit the target" (cp. 10.119-10.119c). 

2/i-m-doubtful destination should also be compared with Ond- 
(nd-) against... (10.95f-10.95m.) in that y{- persists no matter 
what person the object of "against" is, and besides, yi-ni- behaves 
quite differently in contraction. 

y£-m-doubtful destination continuative 

1 yinic- 

2 yini- 

3 yi- 

4 dji- 
i 'i- 

Dl yini'd- 

D2 yinoh- 

3-3 yl- 

1-i %*nic~ 

moves trying to get to target 
tries to get ... to target 

256 NAVAHO GRAMMAS 10.110 -10. 110c w 

2-i H-ni- 

4-i 'ddji- 
Dl-i 'i-nC-d- 
D2-i HnoA- 

-1-^fA (inc.) (-1-tSpi) listen to . . . (WM) 

-If (abs.) set a high value on, put a high price on . . . (WM) 

0£*(< 6t-nd-against*2/i-)ni- . . . -yah (abs.) be able to do it, be pro- 
portionate to ... , match . . . 

3 btyah, ytyah 

4 bidji-yah 

10.110a. y{-ni-(n&-) doubtful destination customary 

there is customary . . . ing to doubtful destination 
. . . is . . . ing to doubtful destination customarily 

When the two prefix combinations nd-(nd-) customary and yi-ni- 
doubtful destination occur together, the effect of (nd-) or (ni-) or 
both, is to lengthen the inflected prefix of the third persons — in the 
other persons nd- is prefixed to the continuative forms (10.110.) 
resulting in net- : 

3 -yi- 

4 -dji- 
i -*i- 

1-i -Hnis- 
2-i -'{-tti- 
3-i -'<- 

4-i -H6i- 

nd-cust. . . .-l-tfyh (cust.) (-l-tfyl) hear; sounds tries to move to . . . cust. 
(YM 222) 

10.110b. y^-m'-doubtful destination wi-perfective 

. . . has . . . ed to doubtful destination 
. . . has tried to ... to destination 

The prefix combination yi-ni-douhti ul destination combines with 
ni-perfective prefixes (10.99a.) to lengthen ni -perf ectives : 

1 yini-- 

2 yi-ninV- 

3 yini*- 

4 yijni'- 
3-3 yi-ni- 

•l-ne* (4-ni'l) throw round obj. 
4-xa'l (-l-xal) throw club, stick 
-l-xan (-l-x$l) throw obj. (gen.) 
~lo' (4oh) throw loop, lasso 

10.110c. yi-n(-doubtiul destination ^"-perfective 

. . . has tried to ... to destination 

The combination of yi-ni-doubtiul destination with si-perfect ivo 
has the order yi~$i-ni-; the following forms should be compan c 

10.110c.-10.111. PREFIXES 257 

with those of si~(n&-) (10.117a.). The presence of the second s in 
some of the forms is unexplained ; no evidence of si-harm is present 
in the continuative, customary, or m-perfective. 

1 yinis-, yiainis- 

2 yini-, yisini- 

3 yiyi-s- 

4 dji-8- 

Dl yisi-d-, yi sint-d- 
D2 yiso--, yiaind-- 

1-1 H'818- 

2-i H-sini- 

3-i H-8- 

4-i 'adji'8-, *adzi<8- 
Dl-i H-si-d- 
D2-i H'so-- 
-l-ttys (-144^1) hear; sound tries to move (YM 222, FH) 

lO.llOd. i/i-^-doubtful destination inceptive cessative 

The cessative affects ^'-m'-doubtful destination by combining 
with -ni- to result in a falling tone; yi-ni-yi-cess. > yinv-\ 

1 yini-c- 

2 yini-- 

3 yini-~ * 

4 yijnv- 

-l-tah (inc. cess.) (-l-tah) count 
-l-td'h (inc. cess.) (-l-toh) shoot arrow 
•1-ne* (inc. cess.) (-l-ni-l) throw one small obj. 
•l-xa-l (inc. cees.) (4-xal) throwclub, stick 
-le-h (inc. cess.) (4oh) throw loop, lasso 

10.1 10e. yi-ni-doubtful destination perfective cessative 

. . . has paused . . .ing to doubtful destination 

The cessative perfective of y/-7^-doubtful destination has the 
following forms. 

1 yini-- 

2 yinini-- \ 
yi'nini- J 

3 yiyinv- \ 
yi-nv- J 

4 yijni*- 
Dl yini-d- 
D2 yind-- 

4-ta' {-l-tah) count 

4-toh (4-toh) shoot arrow 

4-ne' (-l-ni-l) throw one small obj. (YM 163) 

4-xa-l (4-xal) throw club, stick 

46" (-loh) throw loop, lasso 

10,111. #£-m'-reciprocal effect 

yi-ni- is a prefix combination which I refer to as "reciprocal 
effect" (abbreviated "rec.ef."). It is not to be confused with yi- 

253 NAVA&O GRAMMAS 10.llL-lO.lllb. 

< yi-ob].-nd-a,gain$t because ^'-persists in all persons and the com- 
plex is treated in an entirely different way from Oi-(n&-) against. 
The outstanding distinction of s/t-m'-reciprocal effect is the -d- of the 
third persons— yd-, djo-, and 'o-. 

Although «/im-reciprocal effect may seem formally to be related 
to <fe'-?w-prolongative (10.91.), it is distinct in the following respects 
as well as in that already noted: In the future the position of the 
combined elements differs— yi- precedes dt-future, -ni- combines 
with it to result in yide-c-, in comparison with dine-c-. 'a-indefinite 
pronoun combines with yi- to form H'~ whereas 'a- has the position 
between di- and ni- of the prolongative — 'i'dfrc- compared with 

The prefix complex yi-ni- means that the object has the same 
effect on the subject as the subject has upon the object, hence the 
reference "reciprocal effect." The complex is a common one, and it 
should be noted, is used for words expressing emotion, instruction, 
asking expecting an answer, and the like. 

10.111a. yi-(ni-) reciprocal effect future 

. . . ing will take place having reciprocal effect 
. . . will . . . having reciprocal effect 
. . . will ... it having reciprocal effect 

The order of the combination of prefixes in the future is yi-di-iut.- 
(ni-)yi-^vog. and the results of the contractions may be described 
as those of di-start against future (10.90.), (ni-) having the same 
effects in this conjugation as (nd-) in that. Note: 

3-3 yi*d6'- (yi-rec.ef. ; yi-3 obj. ; rft-fut. ; [ni-] ; 3/i-prog.) 

1-i H-de-c- fa-i obj.; yi-rec.ef.; dt-fut.; [ni-}; 2/t-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

4-i H'jdd- fa-i obj.; yi-rec.ef.; d/r-4 subj.; di-f\it.; [ni-}; yi-prog.) 

(3) by i bidVto-- (6i-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag.; y{-rec.ef.; ot-fut.; [ni-}; yi-prog.) 

-be-l pick berries, small fruit 

-l-tah read, count, go to school 

-ji'l call by name, give name to (YM 236) 

-tail chop, pound 

•tiyl listen to (YM 222) 

-loh loop, throw loop at, over; cheat, deceive 

Oa- 'a-theme. . . -li-l depend upon (WM) 
Oi-(K O-ntfc-against) . . . -kil ask about, inquire 
Ota- 'a-theme. . . -ji-l call roll (YM 236) 

10.111b. yi-(ni-) reciprocal effect continuative 

. . . ing is having reciprocal effect 
. . . is . . . ing with reciprocal effect 
. . . is . . . ing . . . with reciprocal effect 

1 yinic- (yi-rec.ef.; [ni-}; -c-1 subj.) 

2 yini- (3/i-rec.ef.; [ni-]; -n- 2 subj.) 

3 yd- (yi-rec.ef.; [ni-]) 

4 djd- (dji-4: subj.; t^-rec.ef.; [ni-]) 

10.111b. PREFIXES 259 

i *o- fa-i subj. ; yi-rec.ef. ; [ni-]) 

Dl yini*d- (t/i-rec.ef.; [ni-]; -vd-J>\ subj.) 

D2 yinok- (yi-rec.ef.; [ni-]; -ofc-D2 subj.) 

PI dSini-d- {da-pi,; yi-rec.ef.;[ni-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

P2 dSinoh- (da-pl.; ^i-rec.ef.;[ni-]; -oA-D2 subj.) 

3-3 yiyo- (yi-3 subj.; yi-rec.ef.;[ni-]) 

1-i H*nic- fa-i obj.; yi-rec.ef. ; [ni-]; -c-1 subj.) 

1 H-tini-) *'**"* ° b ^ ; ^-rec-ef.; [nl-]; "^- 2 subj.) 

3-i 'ayo- fa-i obj.; yi-rec.ef.; [ni-]) 

'«/ I C°-iobj.; dyi-4subj.; yi-rec.ef. ; [n£-]) 

Dl-i H-ni-d- fa-i obj.; j/i-rec.ef.; [ni-]; -i*d-Dl subj.) 

D2-i 'i*no&- fa-i obj.; 2/i-rec.ef.;[ni-]; -ofc-D2subj.) 

3 by 1 yoc- (yi-Z subj, ; t/i-rec.ef. ; [ni-] ; -c-1 ag.) 

3 by 3 yd- (yi-Z subj. ; 2/i-rec.ef. ; [ni-] ; -yt-3 ag.) 

3 by 4 djiyo- (yi-Z subj. ; dji-4= ag. ; yi-rec.ef. ; [ni-]) 

(3) by i 6iYd- (&i-[3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; t/i-rec.ef. ; [ni-]) 

-bi (pres.) (-be-l) pick berries, small fruit (YM 25 -hi-) 

-l-don (mom., pres.) (-dg-l) shoot gun at target 

4-dg- (mom., pres.) (4-dg-l) hold taut, cause tautness 

4-ta > (pres.) (4-iah) read, count, go to school (YM 185) 

4$ (pres.) (defective) hold by attachment (YM 188, FH) 

-l-ne* (pres.) (4-ni-l) throw round obj. at, hammer on, hit with hammer 

-Hi 1 (pres.) (-rivl) have regard for, esteem greatly, show affection for 

-lei* (mom.), -ke-d (pres.) (-Ml) ask question expecting an answer 

4-xa-l (pres.) (-l-xal) throw club at target 

-sih (mom.) (sih) throw point obj. (as spear) at target 

-dzi (mom.) (-dzih) scold, speak to, utter 

-tea? (mom.), -tsah (pres.) (-tsah) move while holding ... in teeth 

44V (pres.) (-tiih) hold in fingertips (YM 222) 

4sin (pres.) (4Sf-l) dig for, dig after 

-jih (pres.) (-ji-l) call by name, use . . . 's name 

-djvh (pres.) (-djih) claw at, grasp with claws, nails (YM 106 -dji 1 ) 

-dji (pres.) (-dji-l) be called by name (YM 236) 

-leh (pres.) {44-1) throw rope at, rope an animal 

44le-h (pres.) (4-tloh) throw viscid substance at 

'a beyond limit 'a-beyorid. . .-li (pres.) (-U-1) depend on, rely upon 

(YM 134) 
'd-thus. . . -sin(pres.) (-8\-l) maintain, take care of, keep in order (YM 182) 
Oi-(< O-nd-against) . . ,-l-t$ (pres.) (defective verb) hold . . . against . . . 

Oi*-(< 0-nd-against-t/i-rec.ef.)ni-rec.ef. 4-ni*h (inc.) (4-nik) accuse of 

flirting with spouse (YM 150) 

by 3 yo-lni-h 
Oi-(K O-nd-against) nd-- . . . -ke*d (inc.) (-Ml) ask for another 

3-1 cind-yoke-d he is asking me for another, he is asking me again 
Ota- . . . -jih (pres.) (-ji-l) call roll (YM 134) 
na-about. . ,-Ji (pres.) (-U-1) expect . . . (YM 134) 

1-3 ndinicli I am expecting him 

1-2 nani-nicli I am expecting you 

3-3 nayoli he is expecting him 
nd-cust. . . . -bch (cust.) (-be*l) pick berries cust. (YM 25) 

1 niinicbe*h I cust. pick berries 

2 niinibe'h you cust. pick berries 



260 KAVAHO GUtAMMAft 10.lllb.-lO.lllc. 

nd-cust.. . .-ji-h (cust.) (-ji-l) call by name cust., mention name cust. 

(YM 236) 
Af^-(< #t-security-2/i-rec.ef.)m-rec.ef.. . .-til (pres.) (-rii-l) be friendly, 

intimate; treat ... as though he were a relative (YM 163, FH) 

1 by 2 164ei-nirii I consider you to be a relative 

2 by 1 Mdnocrii you consider me to be a relative 

3 by 1 kdyocrii he considers me to be a relative 

Odj6i Oi-(K O-nd-against-yi-recef.) ni-rec.ef. . . . -l-tq (pres.) hug, 
embrace (YM 188) 

3-3 yvyoltty he is embracing me 

10.111c. yi~(ni-) reciprocal effect yi-perfective 

there has been . . . ing with reciprocal effect 
. . . has been . . . ing with reciprocal effect 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . with reciprocal effect 

1 yi- (j/i-rec.ef. ; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; [ni-]) 

2 yi-ni- (j/i-rec.ef. ; yi-prog. ; -w-2 subj.; [ni-]) 

3 yd- (yi-rec.ef. ; ^(-prog. ; [nf-]) 

4 djd'- (dji-4: subj. ; i/i-rec.ef. ; yi-prog. ; [ni-]) 
i H-- ('a- i subj.; yi-rec.ef.; yi-prog. ; [ni-]) 

^* * j \ (wf-rec.ef.; yi-prog.; [ni-]; -id-T>l subj.) 
y%n%'d~ ) 

y°, ' > (yi-rec.ef. ; t/i-prog. ; -ok-T>2 subj. ; [ni-]) 

3-3 yiyi'- (2/^-3 obj.; yi-rec.ef. ; 2/t-prog. ; [ni-]) 

3-i 'd- ('a-i obj.; yi-rec.ef.; yi-iprog.; [ni-]) 

3 by D2 yo-h- (yi-3 subj.; f/i-rec.ef. ; yt-prog.; [ni-]; -oh-T>2 ag.) 

(3) by i biYo-' (bi-[3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; t^-rec.ef. ; yt-prog. ; [ni-]) 

i by 3 V-- ('o-i subj. ; t/i-rec.ef. ; t/t-prog. ; [ni-] ; -t/i-3 ag.) 

-'a-Z (-'aZ) chew 

-6f ' (-6e'Z) pick berries, small fruit 

-Z-£a' (-l-tah) count, read, go to school (YM 188) 

-tq* (-1$, pres.) (defective) have hold of, hold by attachment (YM 188) 

-Z-ne' {-l-ni-l) hammer 

-nV (-rii-l) be affectionate 

•gic ( (-gic) cut with blade 

•l-kal (-l-kal) chip, chop off . . . 

-ke-d (-kit) ask expecting an answer 

-dzih (-dzih) scold 

-tso-d (-tsol) grasp 

-tiV (-tsih) hold with nails 

-tdin (-tsf-l) dig for, dig after 

-ji* (-ji'l) call by name 

-dji* (-djih) grasp with claws 

-djV {-dji-l) be called by name (YM 236 ; NT 254 : 20) 

-dlfr' (-dli-l) drink 

'cm-together . . .-I4q* (-l-tah) all, sum is . . . (YM 14) * 

0£-(< O-nd-against) . . . -l-don (-l-dg-l) shoot at target 

0£-(< O-nd-against). . ,-l-ta? (-l-tah) count 

0£-(< O-nd-against) . . . -l-tq* (-l-tq, pres.) hold . . . against . . . (WM) 

0£-(< O-nd-against) . . . -tea' (-tsah) hold in teeth 

Oi-(<i O-nd-against) . . . -tSi' (-tsih) hold with nails 

Ota- . . . -ji 9 (-ji-l) call roll (YM 236) 

lO.llld.— 10.112. PREFIXES 261 

lO.llld. ^-(nt-)reoiprocal effect si-perfective 

there has been . . . ing with reciprocal effect 
. . . has . . . ed having reciprocal effect 
. . . has . . . ed having reciprocal effect 

1 yi- (yi-rec.ef. ; si-pi. ; -c-1 subj. ; [ni-]) 

2 yini- (yi-rec.ef. ; si-pi. ; -n-2 subj. ; [ni-]) 

3 yi'- (yi-rec.ef.; si-pi. ; [ni-]) 

3-3 yis- (y*-3 obj. ; yi-rec.ef. ; si-pi. ; [ni-]) 

3-i 'ayis- fa-i obj. ; yi-rec.ef. ; si-pi. ; [ni-]) 

by 1 yic- (yi-rec.ef.; si-pi. ; [ni-]; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 yds- (yi-rec.ef. ; si-pi. ; [ni-] ; -yi-3 ag.) 

3 by 3 yiyos- (yi-3 subj.; yi-rec.ef.; st-pf. ; [ni-]; -yi-Z ag.) 

-m-a* (-nVJ) be affectionate, be loved 
-dji* (-dji'l) be called byname 

lO.llle. yi-(ni-) reciprocal effect optative 

may (let) . . . have reciprocal effect . . .ing 

The prefix complex yi-(ni-) reciprocal effect conforms to the 
optative rule of 10.82c, but since yi- and (ni-) are separated by 
-d-optative, and since all three affect one another, the optative 
conjugation is given here. Note that y > y and that -i-6- with an 
inflectional prefix (here [ni-]) > -&- (10.82a.): 

1 yd-c- (yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 yd'- (yi-rec.ef. ; -d-opt. ; [ni-] ; -n-2 subj.) 

3 yd-- (yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]) 

4 djd-- (d^-4subj.> yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]) 
Dl yd-d- (yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 yd-h- (yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

1-i y 6-c- fa-i obj.; yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i 'd*- fa-i obj.; yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i \5-- fa-i obj.; yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]) 

4-i 'adjd- fa-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt. ; [ni-]) 

(3) by i 6iYo- (6i-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag.; yi-rec.ef.; -d-opt.; [ni-]) 

10.112. fcd-so far progressive 

. . . ing so far is taking place progressively 
. . . is . . . ing so far progressively 
. . . is . . . ing ... so far progressively 

When ko-so far assimilates to the progressive prefixes the follow- 
ing changes take place : 

1 tewfac- {ko-so far; yi-prog. ; -c-1 subj.) 

2 kwa-- (ko-so far; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 kwd-- (fcd-so far; yi-prog.) 

4 kodjo'- (fcd-so far; dji-4 subj.; yt-prog.) 
Dl kwi-d- (ko-so far; yi-prog.; -t*<f-Dl subj.) 
D2 kwd-h- (&d-so far; yi-prog. ; -oA-D2 subj.) 

'q* . . . -ni-l increase in size, expand ; spread legs apart ; make an opening 
so far (YM 162) 


262 NAVAH0 GRAMMAR 10.1l2a.-10.1 14. 

10.112a. fcd-so far yi-perfective 

. . .ing so far has been taking place 
. . . has . . . ed so far 
has . . . ed ... so far 

It is impossible to tell whether the perfective of ko-so far is ni~ or 
yi-. Since ^-perfective seems to fit slightly better I analyzed the 
perfective as a yi-perfective, but ni- would fit nearly as well; I list 
all the forms available : 

by 1 koa- (ko-so far; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 2 kwi*ni (ko-so far; yt-prog.; -ni-compl.; -n-2 ag.) 

by 3 ko- (ko-so far; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 

by 4 kodji-- (k6-so far; dji-4: ag.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

by Dl tewi-d- (ko-so far; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -fd-Dl ag.) 

by D2 kd'h- (&d-so far; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl. ; -oh-D2 ag.) 

'q* . . .-{tea* (-rii-l) increase in size so far, expand; spread legs apart 
make opening so far (YM 162) 

10.113. xd- < :m-out-wd-back 

xa-out vertically is conjugated in the simpler aspects like da 
down (10.85.). In the cessative, the contraction is of the fori) 
xa-(nd-yi)-yi- > (xa-nd-)yi- > xd-yi- > xdi-. In other words, xa 
and nd- are capable of absorbing one of the yi-prefixes, and of com 
bining with each other. The perfective cessative conjugatioi 

1 xdi- (xa-out; nd-back; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; yt-cess.) 

2 xdini- (xa-out; nd-back; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; yi-cess.) 

3 xdi- (xa-out; nd-back; yi-prog.; yi-cess.) 

4 xddjv- (xa-out; nd-back; dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.; yi-cess.) 
Dl xdi-d- (#a-out; nd-back; yi-prog.; yi-cess.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 xdo-- (#a-out; nd-back; yi-prog.; -oh~T>2 subj.; yi-cess.) 

nahdji* . . . -'d-j (-*ac) two persons back up, go off the trail 
nahdji* « . . -yd (-gd*l) one person backs up, goes off the trail 
nahdji' . . . -kai (-kah) pi. persons back up, go off the trail 
nakdji* . . . -dje^ (-djah) pi. persons run back, go back fast 

10.114. ^-repetitive action 
#i-change position 

The prefix xi- is in some respects apparent as a repetitive win 
I have called the "repetitive of action or motion." It has bo- 
distinguished from {-yi-) "repetitive of aspect/' which should 
considered as an inflectional prefix (10.106-10.106d.). ari-repetiti 
action has some overlapping forms with #o-place, $i-un-, and ol 1 
unstable prefixes, so that they are difficult to isolate, esp< i 
when i becomes a, and other changes take place because of ;t 

Moreover, there seems to be another prefix xi- that has 
forms similar to those of ^-repetitive action in some aspect 

10. 1 14.-10. 1 14b. prefixes 263 

other forms that differ only slightly. This second a^-seems to mean 
"change position, up, upward," in contradistinction with n-di- 
cessative which means "separate two surfaces, start lifting...," 
and xa-up vertically, up out of. The two last prefixes are inceptive, 
and indicate "start of a motion up or up out," whereas xi- perhaps 
refers to "raising an object without changing its horizontal posi- 
tion." xi- in this form may be used with the inceptive, but is a kind 
of compromise between a present and an inceptive. 

A study of the several paradigms shows that some combinations 
are used only with xi- in the meaning of "change position," others 
are used in either meaning. 

In some instances the position of xi- is clear and generally agreed 
upon, but speakers do not agree about the forms which combine 
with yi-, si-, and the like, and they give varying forms. In fact, the 
differentiation of the repetitive aspects is secured from the old men 
rather than from today's speakers. The latter may realize and use 
some of the forms, but do not distinguish meanings and often even 
confuse the repetitives with the cessatives. These remarks are 
illustrated by many of Morgan's mixed paradigms. Many of the 
forms here given are taken from texts in which they are frequently 
demonstrated, but some could not be checked with interpreters who 
say "they are the same." 

The paradigms should be considered as suggestive; probably 
many corrections should be made, especially in interpretation. 
When a combination like xd- is interpreted as a xi- or xa-prefix, it is 
because of other forms, often the second person singular, that 
indicate i instead of a, or o, as the primary vowel of the prefix. 

10.114a. ^-repetitive action progressive 

progression of repetitive motion takes place 
. . . progressively repeats . . . ing 
. . . progressively repeats . . . ing . . . 

The progressive of ^-repetitive action (abbreviated is 
like that of the regular progressive with x instead of y initial 
(10.102.). Note: 

4 djiyo-- (; efyt-4subj.; ^i-prog.) 
3-3 yiyo-- \ 

xiyo-- > ( ; yi~3 obj.; yi-prog.) 

P3-3 dayiyo-- (da-ph;; yi-3 obj.; yi-pvog.) 

10.114b. ^-repetitive action future 

repetitive . . . ing will take place 
. . . will . . . repeatedly 
. . . will — it repeatedly 

264 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.114b.-10.H4c. 

Prefix xi- to the regular future forms (10.87.) and note: 

3-i H-do'- fa-i obj.; xi-x&; di-fnt,; yi-nrog.) 

i by 3 ^ido*- fa-i subj.;; di-fut.; yi-prog.; -yi-3 ag.) 

•na-l come to life, live through a change (as plant transplanted) 
-rki'l person moves (FH) 

'a-beyond. . . T (fut.) unload, carry . . . beyond rep. (YM 56) 
y a-xi- . . . ~l-kal cut wood in random sizes 
na-about. . . -fe-l hop about (YM 198) 
nd-back. . . -rla-l revive, return to life (YM 145) 

by 3 ndxi'do-ria'l he will return to life 
nt-end. . .4-ni-l chop wood 
cco-place. . . 4-yal wriggle on stomach (YM 76) 
2di-out. . . 4-tiil throw out one obj. after another (EW 49) 
Ot6j? 'a-beyond . . . -tal dart at, spring at . . . 

10.114c. #i-repetitive action continuative 

repetitive . . . ing is taking place 
. . . is . . .ing repeatedly 
. . . is . . . ing . . . repeatedly 

1 xec-y xic- ( ; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 xi- (; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 xi- ( ; yi-cont.) 

,..' "> (a? ; djiA subj.; t^-cont.) 

i 'ayi'- f V- fa-i subj.; xi-vep,&c; yi-cont,) 
Dl xi-d~ (^; yi-cont, ; -id-Dl subj.) 

D2 xoh- (; yi-cont,; -oh-D2 subj.) 

Plural: prefix rfa-pl. to dual forms. 

?, ' \ (; yi-Z obj.; yi-cont,) 

1-i H-c- fa-i obj.; xi-ven.&c; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i Hyi- fa-i obj.;; yi-cont, ; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i H-- Ca-i obj.;; yi-cont.) 

4-i 'adji-- fa-i obj.;; dji-A subj.; yi-cont.) 

-T (inc.) load, carry load, . . . rep. ; set down . . . one by one 

-'a*c (-'ac) two persons go 

-ma-l (inc.) (-Trial) gulp noisily, without chewing (YM 143) 

-l-tal (inc.) (-l-tal) kick; move round obj. forcefully 

-yd-h (inc.) (-gd*l) one person goes 

-l-yod (inc.) (4-yol) rigid obj. sways 

-l-xd-c (inc.) (-l-xac) bite, gnaw 

-co-h (inc.) (-coh) brush, comb 

-tse-l (inc.) (-tsil) pound, chop 

-tsxd-s (inc.) (-tsxis) whip, switch ; jerk ropelike obj. ; 

-tdi-c (pres.) (-t6ic) file 

-tio-h (inc.) (-ttd'l) tie, weave, knit 

'a-beyond. . . -l-xan (inc.) (-l-xfyl) throw . . . ; slam door (YM 92) 

'a-theme-nd-cust -mal (cust.) (-mat) gulp noisily (YM 143) 

'cm-together . . . -le-h (inc.) (-loh) catch, trap one after another (YM 13* 

3-3 'axi-yile-h he is snaring them one after another 
Oa- . . . -tioh (pres.) (-tlo-l) tie ... to . . (as horse to a post) 
na-about. . . -re' (mom.) (4i-l) hop about like a stick (YM 198) 

10. 1 14c.-10. 1 14d. PREFIXES 265 

1 naxacfe* I am hopping about 
3 naxate' he is hopping about 
na-down. . .-l-ni-h (inc.) (-l-nih) trade (YM 168) 

3-3 nayi-ni-h he is trading it 
na-about. . . -ridh (pres.) (-rla-l) move body rep. ; heart beats 
na-about. . . -yah (pres.) (-gd-l) person moves about in position 
na-about. . .-tea* (pres.) (-tcah) hop about 
m-end. . . -tih (inc.) (-tih) break up (as a box) (YM 206) 
nt-end. . . -l-ntf (pres.) (-l-ni'l) cut in regular size (as wood, cornstalks, 

squash for drying) 
ni-end. . .-rii'l (inc.) (-riil) chop wood 
nt-end. . .-l-gi-c (inc.) (-l-gic) slice 
ni-. . .-si'h (inc.) (-sih) make mistakes 

3 niyi'si'h he is making mistakes 
Dl nxi-lzi'h we are making mistakes 
3/d-M-(< 'd-thus). . .-l-'i-h (pres.) (-l-'i'l) bury them; cauee-doing-thus- 

out-of -sight (NT 432:3) 
a?a-out. . .-T (inc.) move . . . out rep., unload . . . 

1 xaxac-T I am moving . . . out rep. 
xa-out. . . -l-ta-l (inc.) (-l-tal) kick, move small obj. out forcefully 
xa-oxxb. . . -taxis (mom,) (-tsxis) switch, whip, jerk ropelike obj. 
a^-out . . . -l-tig-d (inc.) (-1-tSgl) pull out one after another (as weeds) 

(YM 226) 
Otco* xa-out. . ,-ni-l (inc.) (-nil) castrate; take genitals out one after 

another (YM 166) 

10.114d. ^-repetitive action yi-perfective 

there has been repeated . . . ing 
. . . has been . . . ing repeatedly 
. . . has been . . . ing . . . repeatedly 

xf-repetitive action has the same forms as rii-uniform yi-per- 
fective (10.98b.) with x instead of n initial, that is, the resulting 
vowel is long, as compared with the short vowel of the regular yi- 
perfective. Note: 

3 yi'- ( ; j/t-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

4 dji'- (; d/i-4 subj.; yt-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
3-3 xiyi*- (; yi-Z obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

by 1 -xe-c- (; 2/i-prog.; -ni-compl. ; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 -xo-- (; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl. ; ~yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 -xidjo*- (; dji-4 ag.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

•yd (-gd-l) one person goes up 
-djih (-djih) rub sand on . . . 

'a-. . .-tah (-tal) (pass.) jump, dart, bounce up (YM 187) 

Oi- . . . -T (pf.) move . . . into . . . , load ... (as wagon, truck) 

0i-(< 0-na-against) . . . -'# (-'d-l) add to it one at a time 

0i-(< O-nd -against) . . . -nil (-nil) add to it several at a time 

id-. . . -ld'% (-16*8) lead animal to water 

m-end. . . -l-ne* (-l-ni-l) chop wood in even lengths 

ni-end. . . -ji-' (-ji'l) saw wood 

#a-out. . .-ka-d \-kal) it (tongue) hangs out (NT 22:26) 

4 dzi-~ \ 

xidzi*- 1 

dzi-z- f 



xiyi-z- ( 

by 1 

X&C " , XvC - \ 

by 3 

XV8- ( 

3 by 3 

xe-c- (. 

(3) by i 

bVti'a- (< 

iby 1 

*axec« ( 

iby 3 

'ayes- ( 


'ayo-h- (' 

i by P2 

da y xo-h- ( 

iby P3 

da'xe-s- (< 

266 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.114e.-10.114f. 

10.114e. in-repetitive action si-perfective 

there has been repeated . . . ing 
. . . has . . . ed repeatedly 
. . . has ed ... repeatedly 

The conjugation of cn-repetitive action ^-perfective is like that of 
di-start from si-perfective (10.88c.) with x instead of d initial. The 
forms that differ are due to the instability of xi- which, because its 
relationship to yi- is so close, has many forms that overlap with 
those of -yi- repetitive aspect (10.106d.). Note: 

( ; dji-l subj . ; ai-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

( ; yi-Z obj. ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 
(; #i-pf. ; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 
(; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 
(a; ; yi-Z subj.; s^-pf. ; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 
(6i-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag.;; $i-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 
('a-i subj.;; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 
('ot-i subj. ; ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 
fa-i subj. ; ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -oh-T>l ag.) 
(da-pl. ; 'a-i subj. ; ;si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -o/t-D2ag.) 
(da--pl.; 'a-i subj.; a?; si-pf. ; -ni- compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

- T (pf . ) move . . . , load . . . 

-mal (-mal) gulp, swallow noisily (YM 143) 

-l-td-l (-l-tal) kick; move-round-obj. -forcefully 

-l-yod {-l-yol) one person runs 

-l-xaj (-l-xac) bite, nibble, gnaw 

-ts&l (-tsil) pound 

-tsxas (-t8xi8) switch, whip, jerk ropelike obj. 

-djfr* (~djah) pi. run 

•l-tc^^ (4-tcd-l) two run; one chases the other 

'a-beyond. . . -T (pf.) move . . . beyond; load , . . 

'cm-together. . . -lo' (4oh) trap, snare one after another (YM 136) 

3-3 ^axiyi'zW he has snared them one after another 
Oi-(< O-na-against). . .-l-tl$ (-l-tlo-l) tie . . . to . . . (YM 215) 
na-about. . . -te* (-fol) hop about; move-about-sticklike (YM 146) 
na-circle. . . -l-tsa-d (-l-tsU) turn about while sitting (YM 228) 
wi-end. . . -T (pf.) unload; carry . . . rep. to end 
ni-end. . . -ti' (-till) break up (as box) (YM 206) 
ni-end. . . -ji«' (-ji'l) saw wood 

m-(< na-down) . . . -Id (-14-1) pay; lay long flexible obj. down (WM) 
xa-out. . . -T (pf.) move . . . out 

#a-out . . . -l-tdg-d (-l-t$ol) pull out one after another (as weeds) (YM 226) 
tdi-out. . . -'a*? (-'ac) two persons go out 
tdi-out, . . -yd (-gd*l) one person goes out 

10.114f. xi-(nd-) repetitive action continuative 

. . . ing is repeated 

. . . repeats . . . ing 
. . . repeats ing . . .* 


-xic- 1 

•xic- J 




-arf- J 








by 3 


10.114f.-10.114g. prefixes 267 

^-repetitive action combines with (nd-) inflective; it is usually 
preceded by some other prefix that requires (nd)-, often mi-cus- 

( ; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 
( ;[nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 
(^ ; [nd-]) 

(a^ ; djiA subj. ; [nd-]) 

(; [nd-]; -fd-Dl subj.) 
( ; [nd-]; -0&-D2 subj.) 
(xi-vep.&c.; yi-S obj.; [nd-]) 
(; [nd-]; -yv3 ag.) 

'a-beyond-nd-cust -te J (oust.) (-toi) spring, bounce, dart up (YM 187) 

'a-beyond-nd-cust. . . . -l-xfyh (cust.) (-l-xfyl) throw . . . , slam door 

'ayiyd . . . -«• (pres.) (-te>l) lay a spell with words (NT 318 : 6) 
Wi-together-nd-cust. . . ,-dloh (cust.) (-dloh) snare, trap one after 

another (YM 136) 
*axi-(<C 'a#*-together-nd-against)nd-cust.. . .-l-tlo-h (cust.) {-l-tld'l) tie 

together (YM 214) 
nd-. . .-T (inc.) turn . . . over 

nd-circle. . . -yd-h (inc.) (-gd*l) one person turns around standing 
1 ndxdcd-k I am turning around standing 
4 ndjiyd-h he(4) is turning around standing 
nd-cust. . . . -tcah (cust.) (-tcah) hop cust. (YM 32) 
1 ndxdctcak I cust. hop 

3 ndxdtcah he cust. hops 

4 ndxidjitcah he(4) cust. hops 

n-(< nt-end)nd-cust. . . . -dd-h (cust.) (-dd'l) one returns cust. 

m-(< na-about)nd-cust. . . .-fe-h (cust.) (-te-l) hop about sticklike cust. 

(YM 190) 
m-(< na-about)nd-cust. . . . -Hah (cust.) (-ria-l) move body cust. 
ni-(< na-down)nd-cust. . . . -l-nih (cust.) {-l-nih) trade, exchange cust. 

(YM 158) 

1 nindxdcnih I cust. trade 
n£-{< nd-circle)nd-cust. . . .-l-tsi' (cust.) (4-tsil) turn cust. while sitting 
1 nindxdstsi' I cust. turn while sitting 
3 nindxdltsi' he cust. turns while sitting 
xa-out-nd-cust -l-tig* (cust.) (-l-tigl) pull out one after another (as 

weeds) (YM 226) 
Otco' rca-out-nd-cust.. . .-nil) (cust.) (Mil) castrate (YM 166) 
tdi-out. . .-T (inc.) move . . . out rep. 
Otdf 'a-beyond-nd-up. . .-to' (mom.) (-tal) dart, spring up at . . . 

10.114g. ari-(nd-) repetitive action si-perfective 

^'-repetitive action combines with si-(nd-) (10.117a.) perfective 
in the order zi-si-(nd-) with the following results: 

1 xd*- (a;; ai-pf.; -c-1 subj.; [nd-]) 

2 xini- (; st-pf.; -n-2 subj.; [nd-]) 

3 xa-z- ( ; *t-pf. ; [nd-]) 

4 dzi'%- (a^ ; efy'i-4 subj. ; si-pf. ; [nd-]) 

268 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.114g.-10.114j. 

xa ..\ \ (;si-pf.;[nd-]; -id-Ql gybj.) 

D2 xiso'- ( ; si-pf.; -oh-T>2 subj. [nd-]) 

by 1 a;da- (#£ ; si-pf.; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 xa**- ( ; si-pf. ; [nd-] ; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 dzi'8- (#*; cfy'i-3 ag.; si-pf. ; [nd-]) 

Oo' na-down . . . -ni- J (-ntft) sell to ... , buy . . . (FH) 
na-down. . . -2-m*' (-J-wiA) trade, exchange, buy, sell (YM 158) 

na-xi'(K #i-nd-against) -id (abs.) pi. persons are seated 

tii' nd- . . . -n*qt** (-rla*l) there has been an earthquake 

n-(< wi-end)-nd-back. . . -dzd (-dd'l) one person returns home 

10.114h. #i-repetitive action future cessative 

repeated . . . ing will pause 

. . . will pause . . . ing repeatedly 

. . . will pause . . . ing . . . repeatedly 

Prefix xv- < ^-repetitive action- j/i-cessative to the regular 
future forms (10.87.). 

10.114L ^-repetitive action inceptive cessative 

repeated . . . ing is starting to pause 
. . . repeatedly . . .ing starts to pause 
. . . repeatedly ing . . . starts to pause 

#i-repetitive action inceptive cessative is like yi-inceptive 
cessative with x instead of y initial (10.105b.). Note: 

3 xi-- 9 yi-- (; yi-oont.; yi-ces&.) 

X ,.J 1 '.' \ (; dji-4 subj.; yi-cont.; vi-cess.) 
dp-yi- J 

3-3 yiyi'- ( ; yi-3 obj.; yi-cont. ; yi-cess.) 

(3) by i bVti*- (6t-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag.;; yi-cont.; 

4-na-h (inc. cess.) (-l-na*l) generate electricity (YM 145) 

0(-(< O-nd-against) . . . T (inc. cess.) add . . . one at a time 

ni-(<. nd-cust.)nd-back. . .-ria-h (inc.cess.) (-na^l) revive cust. (YM 145) 

10.114J. ^-repetitive action perfective cessative 

repeated . . .ing has paused 

. . . has paused . . . ing repeatedly 

. . . has paused . . . ing . . . repeatedly 

The conjugation of xi-repetitive action perfective cessative is the 
same as that of perfective cessative (10.105c.) with x instead of y 
initial. Note: 

2 xi-ni- (; yi-prog. ; -n-2 subj.; yi-cess.;) 

3 yi'-y xi-- (; t/t-prog. ; yt-cess.) 

3-3 yiyi-- (; yi-3 obj.; yi-*prog. ; yi-cess.) 

by 4 xidji'- (; dji-4 ag. ; yi-prog. ; yi-cess.) 

nd-back. . .-nV (-rla'l) revive, generate electricity (YM 145) 
2/d-(< yd-up in air-nd-up) . . . -l-xan (-l-xfyl) throw ... up (YM 92) 

10.114k.-10.115. prefixes 2(59 

10.114k. xi-(yi-) repetitive action repetitive aspect future 

. . . will repeatedly . . . to . . . repeatedly 
The two repetitive prefixes xi- and yi- are combined in the 
following forms : 

1 xidiye-c- ( ; di-fnt. ; s/i-rep.asp. ; j/i-prog. ; -c-1 subj.) 

2 xidiyi*- (a^ ; dt-fut. ; yi-vep. ; 2/*-prog. ; -n-2 subj.) 

3 xidiyo- (a^ ; di-fut. ; j/i-rep.asp. ; s/t-prog.) 

4 xijdiyo- ( ; dji-4 subj. ; di-fut. ; yi-rep.asp. ; j^-prog.) 
3-3 yidiyo-- (; yi-3 obj.; di-fut. ; yi-rep.asp.; ^-prog.) 
3-i xiditfo- (a? ; di-fut.; 'a-i obj.; yi -rep. asp. ; t/t-prog.) 

Plural: forms of the type Dl daxinrd- (10.115b.) are preferred to 
the regular xi~(yi-) forms which may occasionally be used. 

-T (fut.) move ... 

-l-tqc lip, peck, jerk round obj. 

-ni-l pound with hammer, mallet 

-kal slap 

•l-xal club 

-l-xfyl throw . . . ; slam 

-l-xfyl snore 

-sih move sharp obj. forcefully, throw spear 

-l-tlil throw ropelike obj. 

'altogether . . . ~loh catch, snare one after another (YM 136) 

Oa- m-end. . . -tiac two waylay . . . , two lie in ambush (YM 43) 

V*-(< . . T (fut.) carry . . . beyond, unload 

(YM 6) 
Oi-(< O-wa-against). . .-Uio-l tie . . . to . . . (YM 214) 
no-down. . . -l-nih trade, exchange (YM 158) 
nd-back. . . -rla*l revive, return to life (YM 145) 
ni- . . . -tih break up (as box) (YM 206) 

Otco* xa- . . . -ni-l castrate; take genitals out one after another (YM 166) 
4 xaxijdiyo"ni-l he(4) will castrate it 
3-3 xaidiyoni-l he will castrate it 

10*115. ^-change position continuative 

A prefix xi- in combination with some undetermined prefix is 
very puzzling; some of its forms are like those of 
asp. The fact that xi- takes m-perfective suggests that the inflective 
prefix may be ni- but it does not behave like any other m-prefix we 
have analyzed, xi- seems to refer to a change or alternation of 
position of the body or a part of the body or an object without 
moving from a stationary position, xi- is a part of the theme 
combination nd-xi-di- ? in verbs of "rolling, turning over." 

1 xec- 

2 xini-\ 
xi- ) 

3 xe*~ 

4 xidje*- 


270 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.1 15.-10. 115b ; 

i axe'- 
Dl xi-d- 

D2 xoh- 



rt yi-\ 
n- ) 

-nq-h (pres.) (-nq-l) be alive, come to life, live 

3 xi-nq-h he is alive (FH) 

4 xidji-nq-k he(4) is alive (FH) 
-tct'h (inc.) (-tcah) hop (YM 32) 

Oct* m-end. . . -dd-h (inc.) (-dd-l) one person lies in ambush, waylays . . . 

Oa- m-end. . .fcc (inc.) (-foe) two lie in ambush, waylay . . . 

Oa* m-end-nd-cust. . . .-dd-h (cust.) (-dd-l) one person cust. lies in 
ambush, waylays . . . 

Oa' m-end-nd-cust.. . .-toe (cust.) (-tac) two cust. lie in ambush, way- 
lay .. . 

OV*' bi-h . . .-yd-h (inc.) (-gd-l) put clothes on 

Oi' , . . -l-ne" (inc.) (-l-ni-l) put a small round obj. into . . . 

td- si-na- -rid (inc.) (-rla-l) spare life (NT 358 : 8) 

niki- . . , -dd-h (inc.) (-dd-l) one person lays down bets 

10.115a. #i-change position wi-perfective 

xi- is prefixed to the regular ni-perfeotive forms (10.99a.) with the 
following changes. As in the continuative the fourth person xidjv- 
is not explained, although the fourth person plural xijni- is regular. 

2 xi-ni- (%i-; ni-pf.; -n-2 subj.; -m-compl.) 

4 xidje-- (xi- ; d;t-4 subj. ; m-pf. ; -m-compl.) 

P4 daxijni- (da-p\. ; xi- ; dji-4 subj. ; m-pf. ; -m-compl.) 

by 2 xi-ni- (xi- ; nt-pf. ; -m-compl. ; -n-2 ag.) 

by 3 xe-- (xi-; m-pf.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 

-T (stat.) be in series 

-dd (stat.) persons sit in rows 

-dtf (-dg-l) jerk elastic obj. 

•l-tsxas (-l-tsxis) jerk rope, switch, whip 

-tea' (-tcah) hop (YM 32) 

-Id (-U-1) form a line (NT 190 :6) 

'a-beyond. . ,-l-xan (-l-x$-l) throw . . . away (NT 66:15) 

Oa* ni- . . . -td-j (-tac) two persons lie in ambush; waylay . . . (YM 43) 

Oa- ni- . . . -Icai (-Tcah) pi. persons lie in ambush ; waylay . . . 

Oa' ni- . . . -dzd (-dd-l) one person lies in ambush; waylays . . . 

m-(< na-down) . . . -dzd (-dd-l) one lays bets 

#-nd-back. . . -di-l (-dil) dart back down (BW 92: 11) 

10JL15b. atf-m'-change position prolongative continuative 

xi-ni- is treated like dk'-m'-prolongative continuative (10.91a.) 
with x instead of d initial. Note : 

4 djiyi- (dji-4 subj.; xi-ni-) 

3-3 yiyi- (yi-Z obj.; xi-ni-) 

10.115b.-10.116b. tfREEMES 2?1 

Plural: prefix da-pl. to dual forms (daxinvd-). 
-l-tli-d (inc.) (-l-thl) throw pi. obj. 

10.115c. xi-ni-ch&nge position prolongative si-perfective 

xi-ni- change position prolongative is treated like d^-n^-prolonga- 
tive si-perfective (10.91b.) with x instead of d initial. Note: 

by 3 xi-8- {xi-ch&nge pos.prol. ; si-pf. ; [ni-] ; -yi-Z ag.) 

by 4 dji-8- (xi-chaxige pos.prol. ; dji-4 ag. ; si-pf. ; [ni-]) 

by D2 xinoh- (#4-change pos.prol. ; ai-pf. ; [ni-] ; -oh-T>2 ag.) 

by D4 xidji-8- (#i-change pos.prol. ; dji-4 ag. ; si-pf. ; [ni-]) 

Oa* . . . -da (abs.) one lies (sits) in wait for. . . (YM 43) 
Oa- ... -id (abs.) pi. lie (sit) in wait for. . . (YM 43) 
Oa- . . . -hi (abs.) two lie (sit) in wait for. . . (YM 43) 

nd- . . . -t<fa (stat.) pi. persons sit 

10.116. xo- place, in place; things, conditions, circumstances 

In earlier works, xo- has been listed incidentally, sometimes as a 
verbal prefix. The prefix xo- may be a subject or object, in which 
case it may mean * 'place, condition, things, circumstances," or it 
may mean "in place," in which case it may be used with any of the 
personal pronouns and, like other prefixes, it sometimes combines 
with them. For these reasons, and because it is the only prefix with 
-o-vowel, paradigms are given for xo-. Changes in the phonetic 
forms parallel somewhat those of 'a-beyond in that xo- may combine 
with the inflected prefixes to appear as a different form, for instance, 
as xwe'-, xm m -, xa- t etc. For convenience xo- will be referred to as 
"place" in the paradigms, but it is to be understood as having any 
of the meanings given above. 

10.116a. aro-place progressive 

things are . . . ing progressively 
. . . is . . . ing in place progressively 
. . , is . . . ing things progressively 

1 xwex- (cco-place; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 xo-- (a?o-place; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 xo'- (#o-place; yi-prog.) 

4 xodjo-- (xo-place; dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.) 
i 'axo*- fa-i subj.; #o-place; yi-prog.) 

Dl xvA'd- (#o-place; yi-prog. ; -vd-Dl subj.) 
D2 xo'h- (#o-place; yi-pvog. ; -oh-J>2 subj.) 

10.116b. #o-place, things absolute 

place is . . . 
things are . . . 
... is in place 

xo-place, things combines with wi-absolute (10.97.) to form the 

272 NAVAHO GRAMMAR I0.116b.-10.116c. 

1 xac- (aro-place; m-abs.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 xoni- (aro-place; m-abs.; -w-2 subj.) 

3 xa- (xo-place; nvabs.) 

4 xodji- (aro-place ; dji-4 subj. ; m-abs.) 
Dl xoni'd- (#o-place; ni-abs.; -i-d-T>l subj.) 
D2 xonoh- (xo-place; m-abs. ; -oh-D2 subj.) 

-ydji small place 

-l-dzis slightly hollow, washed out place 

•tsoh large place 

-tii-d nice, pleasant place (YM 221) 

-l-tcin have odor, it smells 

•l-tia^ bowllike place (deeper hollow than -l-dzis) 

'a- . . . -yoi excellent, good at, adequate (YM 234) 
to 'a- . . . -yoi much, many, "lots of. . . '* 

10.116c. #o-place continuative 

place is . . . 
things are . . . ing 
. . . is . . .ing things 
... is ... ing in place 

In this paradigm the prefix xo- refers more particularly to 
"things, conditions" (abbreviated as t): 

1 xa'C- (#o-things; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 xo- (#o-things; j/i-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 xa- (#o-things; yi-cont.) 

4 xodji- (a?o-things; dji-4 subj.; yi-cont, 
Dl xwi'd- (aso-things; yvcont.; -i-d-T>\ su 

_,„, t ., a ) 

Dl xwi'd- (aso-things; yvcont.; -i-d-T>\ subj.) 

D2 xoh- (#o-things; yi-cont.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

by 1 xac- (#o-things; yi-cont.;-c-l ag.) 

by 3 xo- (#o-things; yi-cont.; -yi-Z ag.) 

t by i xoHi- (a?o-things; 'adi-i ag.; yi~cont.) 

-l-b}-' (mom., pres.) (-l-bj>- I) build hogan (YM 27) 

-l-di-h (pres.) (-l-dah) clean, clear place 

-ta*l (pres.) (-tal) sing, perform ceremony 

•td (pres.) (-fd'l) plan 

-le*h (pres.) (4e-l) come into existence (YM 125) 

'd-thus. . .-l-'yh (mom.) (-1-^1) do things 

'd-thus. . ,-l-yqh (pres.) (4-yq-l) take care of things 

Od no-about. . . -'ah (pres.) (-'a-l) plan for, govern 

Od — 4-tci'h (mom.) (4-tci'l) make angry, cause trouble (YM 37) 

Oe* . . . -le-h (pres.) (le-l) (3 only) have, come into possession of (YM 126) 

Oe* 01 . . . -ni* (pres.) (-nih) tell about, communicate things 

na-about. . . -l-tyh (mom.) -l-tph (pres.) (-l-tyl) rain sporadically 

na-about. . . -co-h (pres.) (-coh) sweep place here and there (YM 179) 

na-about . . . 'la'h (mom., pres.) (4a-l) have ceremony in progress 

na-about. . .-Ze' (mom.) (-le-l) appear, roam, move about (YM 127) 

n-(< na-about) -da-pl.. . ,-l-tin (pres.) (4-tyl) there are rains here and 

nd-cycle-'a-beyond. . .-na-d (inc.) {-rial) long time passes (YM 151) 
n£-(< nd-cycle)nd-cust.-'a-beyond. . .-no' (cust.) (-nal) longtime cimt. 

passes (YM 151) 

10.ll6d.-10.ll6e. prefixes 273 

10.116d. a;o-place m-perfective 

When a;o-place is prefixed to m-perfective (10.99a.), the two do 
not contract, note: 

2 xwi*ni- (#o-place; nt-pf. ; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

-te-l (stat.) be wide, broad, gradually widening 
•zi-d (-zil) grope one's way (YM 240) 
4Sa- J (stat.) be bowllike 

'alfti . . . -Jc4 (-ka-l) terraces lie, there are terraces 

'alUi da-. . . -Jca-d (-Teal) there are broad terraces 

Oa- 'd- . . . -sin (-#f 2) be aware of (YM 243) 

'd- . . . -l-U'l (abs.) be relatively wide (YM 14) 

Oe- rn-end. . . -'<£ (-'d-Z) enforce law 

m-end. . . -'$ (-'d-J) make decision, law, decide 

niki- . . . -l-ty (-l-U'l) rain 

lahgo . . . -#' ( -tih) chant according to a special line 

10.116e. zo-place t/i-perfective 

things have been . . . ing 
. . . has been . . . ing things 
. . . has been . . . ing in place 
. . . has been . . . ing ... in place 

Whereas ni-perfective and t/t-perfective usually have so many 
forms in common that it is difficult, or even impossible, to be sure 
to which perfective a form belongs, the distinction comes out clearly 
with zo-place. We have noted (10.116d.) that xo- and m-perfective 
do not contract; xo- and yi-perfective do, to form the type xo*-. 

(ao-place; yi-prog. ; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
(xo-place; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
(xo-place; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
(zo-place; dji-4 subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
(:ro-place; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl. ; -i-d-T>\ subj.) 
(#o-place; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
(:ro-place; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 
(xo-ipl&ce; 2/i-prog.; -ni-compl.; -yi-S ag.) 
(xo-place; d/i-4 ag.; t/t-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 
(xo-place; 'adi-i ag. ; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
(xo-place; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.; -ok-T>2 ag.) 

extend, project 
early light ; things are visible 

be in town ; be amongst places 

sing, perform ceremony 

broad, wide 
-yq'd (-yq-l) be wise, thoughtful, intelligent, careful 

Dl xwi-d%4 
•l-ji'j (-l-jic) time passes 
•dzq (abs.) be hollow, tubular 
-l-dzis (abs.) low, shallow place 
-tia^ (abs.) hollowed, bowllike plain 
-dji^ (-djf-l) be black, blackened 
•texon (abs.) smell bad 













by 1 


by 3 


by 4 




by D2 




4-Hn (stat.) 



-td-l (-ta-l) 

-te-l (stat.) 


NAVAfcO GRAMMAR I0.116e.-10.ll6* 

•ttia (-ttia) harden (WM) 

'a-beyond . . . -Z-'d (abs.) records are left 

'a-beyond. . . -te-l (abs.) wide, broad 

"ako . . . -dza- (-rie-l) things took such a course 

Oa- 'a-. . .-<fetf (abs.) deep hole that does not belong (as from stick in 

flesh) . . 

'd-thus . . . :din (stat.) (-dfl) be wanting, missing, non-existent 

'dxo-din there is no such thing 
'd-thus. . . -U (4H) things are thus 
'd-thus . . . -la- (-le-l) do, create, construct 

'dxo-la- place is prepared 
'd-thus. . . -dza- (-rie-l) be done to, happen 

'd-thus . . . -dzvl (abs.) be strong 

Od . . .-l-tc\\ -i-tc\'d (J-tci-l) cause trouble for . . ., irritate . . ., make 

. . . angry (YM 37) 
*ddil (< 'dot -self -J- with) . . . -l-b6-j (abs.) be in hot water, be embroiled 

Oe* 01 -l-ni' (-l-nih) relate, report, give information about 

Oi-' . . . -dz$ (abs.) be hollow, tubular (YM 27) 

wa-about. . . -l-t$-* (4-tj-l) rain here and there 

nd-'a-beyond. . .-nd'd (-rial) there was maximum accomplishment; 

many things happened; long time passed (YM 151) 
nV earth . . . -djf-' (-dji'l) night came on ; earth became dark 
xa-out . . . -ta'h (-tal) pop up with an idea, dart up like a snake 
tsi-xa- . . . -ad (sd-l) disturb the peace (YM 139) 
0t6jl 'a-beyond. . . -#' (-tih) there is a route to . . . 

Oyd -dz4 (abs.) there is a leak, hole through a thin obj . (FH) 

xa-out . . . ~te-l (abs.) place widens out 

cca-out. . . ~ge-d (-gol) dig hole 

ara-out. . . -tea-' (abs.) bowllike place (deeper than 4-dzis) (FH) 

to- y a -beyond. . .-yoi (abs.) increase in number, quantity; become 

much, many (YM 234) 
Jdi-out. . .-ft' {-tih) trail leads out (WE; EW 90:3) 
01 . . . -y^-* (abs.) be lazy 
01 06* . . . -zin (-zj-l) be acquainted with . . . 

10.1161. xo-place si-perfective 

place is . . . 

things are . . . 

. . . has . . . ed in place 

. . . has ... ed ... in place 

Prefix aro-place to regular si-perfective forms (10.117.) and note: 

2 xwi-ni- (a?o-place; si-pf.; -w-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3-3 xaz- 1 (#o-place; m-3 obi.; #i-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

by 3 xo8- (#o-place; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

-l-T (pf.) keep, have . . . ; cause ... to be in place 

xaz'4 it is the rule, law 
4-bf {4-bi-l) build hogan (YM 27, FH) 
-ni** (-nil) desire in vain 
-gqc (-gcffi) shoot witch obj. 
-ka-d (-leal) be flat, spready place 
•l-tcfr* (-l-tcj'l) smell, odor is given off 
-Zf (4e-l) become 
•tiic (stat.) be muddy 

10.116f.-10.116h. PREFIXES 275 

*a-beyond-nd-again. . . -l-je-' (-l-jah) go hunting again 

P3 'and-daxacje-' they went hunting again 
Oa- 80,-d . . . -ty (-le-l) complain about things (YM 141) 
Oe- *ddi-{< 'd<&-self-nd-against). . .-l-ni-* [4-nih) exploit 
no-about . . . -co-\-ooh) sweep place here and there 
na-about. . ,4e* (4e-l) appear at random ; roam (YM 127) 

ni-(< na-ofoout)da-ip\ 4-tq- y (4-ti-l) there have been rains 

yd-good. . . -yq-'* {-yq-l) watch over, care for 

aja-out. . ,-ffi (-tih) trail extends out of canyon 

01 ara-out. . . -dja-* (-djih) jerk out (as sack of flour) 

nixti xadaxacdja-' we were suddenly jerked out of car 

10.116g. ao-place with "see" continuative 

. . . knows the place 

... is familiar with things (there) 

The undetermined prefix of 10.107. shows itself with #o-plaoe in 
the continuative by its lengthening influence. It behaves as the 
pronominal prefixes in having long -O'- in the third, the most 
common persons, and in so doing resembles a progressive. 

1 xwe-c- 

2 xwi-ni- 

3 xo-- 

4 xodjo-- 
Dl xwi-d- 
D2 xo-h- 

• J f (pres.) (-'{-1) know the place 

-V\'h (inc.) (-l-'j-l) early light, pre-dawn 

Od . . .-'f (pres.) (-'^) guide . . . ; see the place for . . ,'s benefit (cp. 
YM 108) 

10.116h. -a^>-(wd-)place continuative 

#o-place combines with (nd-) and results in the following forms: 

1 -xdo- (-#o-place; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 -xo-, xon- (-#o-place; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

3 -xd- (-#0-place ; [nd-]) 

4 -xodji- (-a?o-place; dji-± subj.; [nd-]) 
Dl -xwi'd- (-xo-place; [nd-]; -vd-Dl subj.) 
D2 -xoh- (-#o-place; [nd-]; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

by 1 ~xac- (-#0-place; [nd-] ; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 -xd- (-#o-place; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 -xodji- (-a?o-place; dji-4: ag. ; [nd-]) 

Oa- 'd-thus. . ,4-yq, (pres.) (4-yq-l) be careful, watchful, shrewd, wary 
'd-thus. . . -din (pres.) (-dj-l) indefinite things are lacking 
'd-thus. . ,-t\ (pres.) (-t\*l) behave, do things thus 
'd-thus. . *-ne'h (pres.) (-ne-l 9 -n4-l, -ni-l) do thus 
'd-thus. . ,4-y4 (pres.) (-l-yq-l) care for, watch over; be wise, sensible 
'd-thus. . . -£cf (pres.) (-tcj-l) be angry (YM 3) 
Od nd-cust. . . . -tcf (cust.) (-tcyl) become angry at . . . cust. 
06' . . . sin (pres.) (-8\'l) know, be acquainted with . . . 
06- . . .-dzid (pres.) (-dzil) be dangerous 
ci-xddzid I am dangerous 

276 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.116h.-10.1l6j. 

Oi- . . . -s<$-h (inc.) (sqJti) miss absent person (YM 175) 

n-(< m-end)nd-back. . . -dd-h (inc.) (-dd-l) one person returns home 

nd-cust.. , .-ty'h (cust.) (-b\-l) build hogan (YM 27) 

nd-cust. . . . -zV (cust.) (-zil) grope one's way cust. 

nd-cust. . . . -dle-h (cust.) (-dle-l) become cust. ; revert to ... , change 

back to ... ; country is getting green (FH) 
nd-. . ,-dle-c (pres.) (-dlic) paint (FH) 
nd--again. . . -dle-h (pres.) (-dle-l) become again 
m-(< wa-about)nd-eust. . . . -Vft (cust.) (- J d-l) plan (YM 9) 
ni-(< nd-cust. )nd-back. . .-dle-h (cust.) (-dle-l) revert cust. 
01 'd-thus. . .4% (4{-l) have visions (NT 150:28) 

10.116i. -#o-(wd-)place si-perfective 

Prefix #o-place to regular si~(nd-) perfective forms (10.117a.) and 

3 -xdz- (ao-place; «i-pf. ; [nd-]) 

by 3 -xds- (#o-place;#&-pf. ; [nd-]) 

'a-beyond-nd-circle . . . -dzoh (-dzoh) encircle, bound with line 
nd-back . . . -dip' (-died) things have become green ; get new . . . 

tike-' ndxd8dli' y I got new shoes 
/&-(< A&-over-nd-against) . . .-don (stat.) road is straight, place is level 
M-(< #i-security -nd-back) . . .-dip 9 (-dle-l) peace has returned (YM 117) 
M4--(< #i-over-nd-against-nd-back). . ,-dg-d (-dg-l) level off, smooth 

road, place 
OB- . . , -'ah (-'ah) blame (YM 13) 

10.116 j. xo-m-start for place continuative 

... is starting for place 

xo-place may be prefixed to the regular forms of m-start for 
(10.99.) and note: 

3 xo- (xo-place; m-start for) 

-l-'in (stat.) daylight is starting 
-l-bj- (pres.) (-l-b\-l) build hogan 

-y4 (pres.) (-yq-l) be intelligent, wise, careful, thoughtful (YM 81) 
1 xonisd 

Dl xoni-dzq 

D2 xonohsd 
-yd-' (stat.) weak, feeble, weakening 
-dzq (stat.) there is wisdom 

-jdni (stat.) satisfactory, beautiful, happy, good, healthful, content 
-j$ (stat.) be happy, successful, enjoyable, satisfied, content 
•dji (stat.) be named, called 
•1$ (stat.) be available; there is, there are 
-tiiz (stat.) ground is hard 

Oa' . . . -yq (pres.) (-yq-l) be careful with . . . , have a care for 
Oa- 'd-thus. . .-l-y$ (pres.) (-l-yq-l) manage one's own affairs 
Oa- . . . -tcf (-tci-l) be stingy with land (YM 35) 
Oa- sa-d . . . -Z$S (stat.) complain; there are words on account of . . . 

(YM 141) 
*d-self . . . -dzi-l (stat.) have energy, be energetic (YM 14) 
Oe- Od . . . -l-'a-h (inc.) (-l-'d-l) give paper permit to ... , with. . . there 

is permission for . . . 's benefit (FH) 

10.116j.-10.116m. PREFIXES 277 

nd-cust. . \ . -dl$ people are at a place, there are always some (FH) 
Otte* . . . 4-'i (pres.) (-l-'yl) obey, do according to . . . (YM 101) 

10,116k. xo-yi-])la>ce repetitive aspect continuative 

there is repeated . . .ing in (at) place 
things are repeatedly . . . ing 
... is repeatedly . . . ing in place 
... is repeatedly . . .ing ... in place 

1 j-o-c- (#o-place; yi-cont. ; yt-rep.asp. ; -c-1 subj.) 

2 xo-- (ax>-place; yi-cont.; yi-rep.&sp.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 xo-- (#o-place; yi-cont.; ^i-rep.asp.) 

4 xodji-- (#o-place; yi-cont. ; dji-4 subj.; yi-rep.asp.) 
Dl xwi-d- (xo-place; yi-cont.; yi -rep. asp. ; -i-d-T)l subj.) 
D2 xo-h- (a;o-place; yi-cont.; j/t-rep.asp. ; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

-l-'i'k (mom., inc.) (-l-'j-l) early light arrives 

'a-beyond. . . -l-ye (pres.) (-l-yfrl) place beyond is called 

'd-thus. . . -t% (pres.) (-t\*l) guide 

'd-thus-nd-cust.. . .-l-'j-h (cust.) (-l-'i'l) place is cust. prepared (YM131) 

Oi~ . . . -l-'a-h (pres.) (-l-'d-l) communicate knowledge, learn from, teach 

to, derive knowledge from 
n-(< na-about) . . . -ta-h (pres.) (-td-l) be ordained 

nd-cust -l-'i'h (cust.) (-l-'j-l) daylight cust. returns (YM 101) 

Ot6f da-suspended. . . -tsi-h (inc.) (-taih) point at with stick (as pointer) 

01 t6i-out. . .-l-'i'h (mom.) (-1-^-1) help out . . . 

01 Jdi-out-nd-cust. . . . -W\-h (cust.) (-l-'i'l) help out cust. 

10.1161. xo-yi-jA&ce repetitive aspect si-perfective 

things have repeatedly . . .ed 
. . . has repeatedly . . . ed things 

Prefix xo-place to regular ^-perfective forms (10.117.) and note: 

by 3 xo*8- (#o-place; si-pf. ; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 xodjo-8- (#o-place; dji-4 ag.; si-pL ; -yt-rep.asp. ; -ni-) 

-l-'j'd (-l-'i'l) become fully daylight; seeing is caused 

-l-ni^ (-l-nih) be dependable 

-l-yi (-l-yi-l) place is called, has the name . . . 

Oct- 'd-thus . . . -l-yq-d (-l-yq-l) come to one's senses, turn over a new leaf 

10.116m. xo-yi-ni-jAaae reciprocal effect continuative 

things are . . . ing with reciprocal effect 
. . . is . . . ing things with reciprocal effect 

#o-place combines with yi-ni- reciprocal effect to result in the 
following forms. They should be compared with xini- (10.115b.): 

1 -xwi-nic- (-:ro-things; yi-rec.ef. ; [ni-]; -c-1 subj.) 

2 -xwi-ni- (-xo-things; yi-rec.ef. ; [ni-]; -n-2subj.) 

3 -xo- (-xo-things; 2/i-rec.ef. ; [«i-]) 

4 -xodjo- (-xo-things ; dji-4 subj. ; 2/i-rec.ef. ; [ni-]) 
Dl -xwi-ni'd- (-xo-things; 2/i-rec.ef. ; [ni-]; -vd-Dl subj.) 
D2 -xwi-ndh- (-#o-things; yi-rec.ef. ; [ni-]; -oh-D2 subj.) 
•dji (pres.) (-dji-l) be named, called, have a name 
'd-thus. . . -sin (pres.) {-&j-l) keep, maintain position 


278 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.116n.-10.11flp. 

10.116n. xo-xi-(yi-) place repetitive action repetitive aspect, 


things are repeatedly starting to . . . repeatedly 
... is repeatedly starting to ... in place repeatedly 
... is repeatedly starting to ... it in place repeatedly 

#o-place prefixed to #i-rep,ac.-?/i-rep.asp. combines as xwi*-\ 
the conjugation is like that of -i/i-repetitive aspect continuative 
(10.106b.) with xw instead of y initial. Note: 

2 xwi«yi- (xo-place; ; yi-cont/; -yi-rep.asp. ; -n-2 subj.) 
4 xodji-- (xo-place;; dji-4 subj.; t/i-cont.; -yi-rep.asp.) 

-T (inc.) . . . moves in place 
4-tj-h (inc.) (-l-tyl) start to rain 

na-about. . ,-riah (pres.) (-rla't) earth quivers, quakes 
m-end. . ,4-dla-d (pres.) (4-dlal) plo W (YM 52) 

ni- end -na -cust 4-dla 1 (cust.) (4-dlal) plow cust. (YM 52) 

n-(< na-about)da-pl. . . . -riah (pres.) (-ria-l) Universal things move (AB) 
xa-out. . . 46id (pres.) (-tdil) scratch out hole (as »nimal digging) 
rra-out-nd-cust -go' (cust.) (~goh) dig hole out cust. <YM 90) 

10.116o, xo-xi-yi-pl^ce repetitive action repetitive aspect 


. . . repeatedly starts . . . ing repeatedly in place 
. . . repeatedly starts . . .ing . . . repeatedly in place 

Prefix xwi- < #oplace-xi-repetitive action to regular £/i-repetitiy e 
aspect-si-perfective forms (10.106d.) and note: 

2 xwi-ni- (zo-place;; si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp. -n-2 subj.; -ni- 


3 xwi'Z- (xo-place;; si-pf.; -yi-rep.asp.; -ni-compl.) 

4 xodzi-z- (#o-place;; d/ji-l subj.; si-pf.; -#i-rep.asp. ; -ni- 

Dl xwiye'd- (#o-place ; ; si-pf. ; -t/i-rep.asp. ; -ni-compl. ; 

-i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 xwiyo- (xo-place;; si-pf. -j/i-rep.asp. ; -oh-T>l subj.; 


m-end. . . 4-dld-d (4-dlal) plow field (YM 52) 

10.116p. xo-si-thmgB harm progressive 

things harmful are . . . 

When #o-things-$i-harm is prefixed to the progressive the 
forms are: 

1 xwex- (ao-things; si-harm; ^i-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 xwi*~ (#o-things; si-harm; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 XO'C-, X0'8- (xo-things; si-harm; yi-iprog.) 

4 xodjo-- (#o-things ; dji-4 subj. ; st-harm ; t/i-prog.) 
Dl xwi-d- (aw-things; si-harm; 2/i-prog.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 xo-h- (#o-thmgs ; si-harm ; yi-prog.; -o/t-D2 subj.) 

Ot6ah . . . -ke-l scold, exert authority by words 

10.116q.-10.116t. PREFIXES 279 

10.116q. xo-si-thingQ harm future 

things will be . . . harmfully 
things will be un- . . . 
. . . will harm things 

Prefix xwi* < #o-thmgs-si-harm to regular future forms (10.87.). 

-l-yfrl place will be called, named (YM 78) • 

Oa- J aya-tilt. . .-li*l be suspicious of . . . (YM 133) 
W ...-nth suffer (YM 158) 

10.116r. ito-si-things harm continuative 

harmful things are taking place . . . ing 

#o-things combines with si-harm to form x<y- and note: 

2 xwi-ni- (^o-things; st-harm; yi-vont.; -n-2 subj.) 

4 xod/jo-- (xo-things; dji-4 subj.; si-harm; yi-cont.) 

Dl xwi'd- (xo -things; si-harm; yi-cont.; 4*d-I)l subj.) 

Oa° 'aya-tilt. . . -l-ni (pres.) (-l-ni'l) be suspicious of. . . (YM 133) 
Oa- 'at/a-tilt. . . -li (pres.) (-li-l) be suspicious of . . . (YM 133) 
Oa- 'aj/a-tilt-nd-cust.. . ,-l-ni-h (cust.) (4-ni-l) suspect cust. 
Oa* 'a^/o-tilt-na-cust. . , .-dli-h (cust.) (-dli'l) suspect cust. 
'd-thus. . .-fyh (inc.) {-tyl) do things thus (FH) 
'd-thus-nd-cust. . . . -ty-h (cust.) (-fyl) quit, back out cust. (YM 202) 
Oi-(0-nd-against)nd-cust.. . .-sqh (cust.) (-sq'l) miss, find . . . gone 

Dl binaxwvlzqh we miss him; we came and found him gone 
ti" ... -ni-h (pres.) (-nih) suffer (YM 158) 
ti* nd-cust.. . . -rlih (cust.) (-riih) suffer cust. (YM 158) 

10.116s. xo-si- things harm yt-perfective 

harmful things have been taking place 
. . . has been harming things . . . ing 

When aro-things-si-harm is prefixed to the i/t-perfective (10.104.) 
the following forms result : 

1 xoci-c- (:co-things; st-harm; yi-prog.; -c-\ subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 xoci-nt- (ajo-things; si-h&rm; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

3 xo-c- (#o-things; st-liarm; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

xodii- I (^o-things; dji-4: subj. ; si-harm; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 

Dl xoci-d- (#o-things; *i-harm; yi-prog.; -ni-compl. ; -id-Dl subj.) 
D2 xoco-- (a;o-things; si-h&rm; yi-prog.; -oh-D2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

Plural: Prefix da-pl. to dual forms. 

Otda . . . -ke-d (-ke-l) scold, assert authority with words (FH, AB) 

10.116t. xo-si-things harm si-perfective 

harmful things have occurred 
things have been un- . . . 
. . . has un- . . . things 

Prefix xwi'- < #o-things-si-harm to the regular forms of ^'-per- 
fective (10.117.) and note: 

280 XAVAHO GKAMMAR 10.116t.-10.J17. 

3 xo-z- (rro-things; si-harm; si-pf.; -m-compl.) 

4 xodzo-z- (#o-things; dji-4 subj.; s^-harm; *i-pf.; -ni-compL) 
by 3 xo-8- (#o-things; *i-harm; st-pf. ; -m-compl. ; -yi-3 ag.) 

byD2 ao-fc- 1 ( a , . th i n g S; ^. harm; ^.pf. ; . n i. CO mpl.;-o^-D2ag.) 

Oa- 'aya-tilt. . .-Zi*' (-K-/) suspect . . . (YM 133) 
Oe* 'ddt-(< 'd^-self-nd-against). . . -Z-ni*' (-Z-m-J) exploit — 
Oi-{< O-nd-against). . .-«a ? (sah) miss, find . . . gone (YM 175) 
ti y . . ,-m-* (-mTt) suffer (YM 158) 

10,117. si-perfective 

si-(m- )perfective denotes condition, quality, existence of ... , and 
is the conjugation of si-static (8.31.), as well as of completed general 
action or motion, si-perfective of active verbs denotes that the 
action has been completed in such a way that a state is described. 
The state may refer to a condition denoted by the prefix, for ex- 
ample, di-start from with si-perfective indicates that the start has 
been completed. 

1 si- (si-pf.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 sini- (si-jpf. ; -n-2 subj.; -na-compl.) 

3 si- (si-pf. ; -m-compl.) 

, ." > (dji-4 subj. ; si-pf. ; -ni-corripl.) 

i 'az- ('a-isubj. si-pf. ; -m-compl.) 

Dl si-d- (st-pf.; -ni-compl. ; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 80-- ($i-pf. ; -oh-T>2 subj.; -m-compl.) 

Plural: prefix rfa-pl. to dual forms and note: 

P3 da'Z- (da-jA.; si-pf. ; -m-compl.) 

3-3 yiz- (#i-3 obj.; $i-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

by 1 sis- ($t-pf. ; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 yis- (si-pi. ; -m-compl.; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 dzis- (dji-4 ag. ; si-pf. ; -m-compl.) 

by D2 so-h- (si-pf.; -m-compl.; -oh-D2 ag.) 

by P3 dais- (da-pl. ; *i-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-Z ag.) 

(3) by i bi'fis- (bi-[$] subj.; 'adi-i ag. ; ai-pf.; -m-compl.) 

-T (stat.) there is . . .obj., condition, quality 
-l-T (stat.) be in one's possession, keep . . . obj. 
-"i'd (-'i'l) nauseate, disgust . . . (YM 102) 
-fa' (-td'l) substitute 
-l-tcf (-tci'l) give birth to 
-z\ y -z£ (-z\-l) stand 

Vbeyond. . .-lij (-lie) urinate (YM 135) 

*altia da- . . . -dzoh (-dzoh) mass is divided into more than two parts 

'axd- da- . . .-ti (-tih) forfeit 

Oa- ... -ti' (abs.) (3 only) be careful of, respectful of . . . (YM 207) 

by 1 ba- sisti* I am respectful of it, him 

by 3 ya- yisti* he is respectful of him, it 
da- . . . -gan be dry, dessicated 
da- . . . -tsq, (-tsa-l) one person is very ill, one person dies 

3 da-zts$ one person, animal died 
dah -suspended. . . -T (stat.) be up on, suspended 

10.117.-10.118. PREFIXES 


wd-back. . . -z$-z (-zQ-s) turn fabric inside out 

nd-xi- . . . -tsa-d (-tsil) turn while sitting (YM 228) 

tw-(< na-about) 'a-beyond . . . -l-bd-z (4-bqs) take a trip on wheels (as by 

wagon, car, train) (YM 23) 
n-da- . . . -l-tiaj (abs.) be cramped from sitting (YM 23) 

1 ndacickaj I am cramped from sitting 
3 nda-ckaj he is cramped from sitting 

10.117a. -si-(nd-) perfective 

The inflective prefix (nd-) seems to take the place of -n£-comple- 
tive in the perfectives, the following forms resulting with ^-perfec- 
tive ; changes in tone being notable : 

1 -86- (si-pf.; -c-1 subj.; [nd-]) 

2 sini- (st-pf.; -n-2 subj.; [nd-]) 

3 -ndz- (si-pf.;[nd-]) 

4 -dzi- | {dji _4 gub j t . s ;_ pf . [n ^. ]} 

-CtZtZ- ) 

i -'dz- fa-isubj.;si-pf.;|>d-]) 

Dl -8%-d- (si-j>f.;[nd-]; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 sd- (at-pf. ; -oh-T>2 subj. ; [nd-]) 

3-3 -ndiz- (yi~3 obj. ; si-pf. ; [nd-]) 

by 1 -si8- (si-pf. ;[nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 

by 3 -yinds- (*vpf.; [nd-]; -yi-3 ag.) 

'alnd- . . . -T (pf.) exchange positions (YM 8) 

2 'alndini-T 

3 'alndiz-T 

'dda- nd- . . . -t\-d (-fyl) devote oneself to completely, "be all wrapped up 

in ..." 
06- . . ,-l-ny (-l-n\k) remember . . . 
06- . . .-1-ktvi- (-l-ko) vomit 

06- . . ,-l-dzi-d (-l-dzi'l) be frightened, shy away from . . . 
wd-circle . . . 4{ (abs.) flow around 
nd-against-'a-theme. . .-l-dj-d (4-d%-l) have exactly the right amount, 

plenty but none to spare (FH) 

4 nd'tSisdj-d he(4) has the proper amount 
nd--again-'a-beyond. . .-dlic (-dlic) urinate again (WE) 
O-ni-. . .-Uai (abs.) straddle (YM 115) 

-led . . . -ti' (-tih) be reticent toward, be shy, respectful of ... in speech 
kin-. . .-l-da t (-l-da-l) menstruate for the first time (YM 44) 
by 3 kina'sda? she menstruated for the first time 

10.118. si-harm, un-. . . 

A prefix si-harm, untoward, un-. . . has been a matter of great 
confusion; it becomes -o*- in the progressive at the same time 
retaining -s- in some forms, and therefore looks like a si-perfective. 
Young and Morgan have sometimes interpreted the forms of si-harm 
as static although the stems with which they occur are not per- 
fective or even continuative in all cases. Moreover, some of the 
prefix forms are incompatible with such an interpretation, si-harm 
is assimilated to prefixes other than progressive and future, but it 
persists in enough forms to indicate its distinction. 

282 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.118.-10.118^ 

si-harm indicates an untoward event, an intent to harm, a n 
undoing, but sometimes has the opposite meaning "favorable, hope- 
ful, encouraging." 

10.118a. si-harm, un-. . . progressive 

harm is . . . ing progressively 

. . . is . . . ing harm progressively 

. . . is . . . ing harm to . . . progressively 

1 808- (si-harm; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 st(WM)} (^ harm J^-P ro g-;- w - 28ub J-) 

3 so-- (si-harm; yi-prog.) 

4 djiyo-- (dji-4: subj.; si-harm; yi-prog.) 
i Hyo-~ ('a-i subj.; si-harm; yi-prog.) 

T>1 8%'d- (si-harm; yi-prog.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 80-h- (si-harm; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

3-3 yiyo*- (yi-3 obj.; si-harm; yi-prog.) 

1-i Hye-c- fa-iobj.; si-harm; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i Hyi-- ('a-i obj.; si-harm; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i Hyo-- ('a-i obj.; si-harm; yi-prog.) 

-n$-l kill many 

-l-xfrl kill one 

•l-tSj-l there is threatening sound 

80-Uii-l evil (witch) sound moves (EW 310:20) 
na -a bout -'a -theme. . .-l-ni-h epidemic spreads 
wa-about-'d-thus-#o- . . . -dld'l one person loiters 

10.118b. si-harm future 

there will be . . . ing harmfully 
. . . will . . . doing harm 
. . . will . . . harming . . . 

The future of si-harm may have the same forms as -^-repetitive 
aspect future (10.106a.), there being none in which si- or s- is un- 
assimilated. If si-harm and ^-repetitive aspect are used together 
yi-(< si-) is prefixed to the repetitive aspect future forms. The 
analysis is of the pattern : 

3 diyo-- (di-fut. ; si-harm; yi-prog.) 

y %yo-- (yi-Z obj.; o*i-fut.; si-harm; yi-prog.) 
y%do'Z- ) 

~n%-l kill many 
-l-xfrl kill one 
•dlq-l believe 

'd-self. . .-l-yi'l commit suicide; kill self 

by 4 ' ajdiyo'lyfrl he(4) will kill himself 
na-about-'d-thus-ao-place. . . -l^ac two persons loiter 
na-about-'d-thus-xo-place . . . -hah pi. persons loiter 
na-about-'d-thus-#o-place. . .-dld'l one person loiters 
Afi-sever-'i-(< 'a-beyond-si-harm) . . . - y al untie, loosen hair 
Ot64 . . . -"i'l prevent. . . , obstruct. . . (FH) 

3-3 yitdQido-z'j'l he will put it in his way 
Otdf wa-about-xo-things. . . -ria-l have trouble (YM 146) 


sis-, i 




si - 




















10.ll8c.-10.ll8d. PREFIXES 283 

10.118c, si-harm continuative 

harmful . . . ing is taking place 
... is ... ing harmfully 
... is un- . . . ing 
... is un- . . . ing . . . 

(si-harm; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 
(si-harm; yi-cont.; -w-2 subj.) 
(si-harm; yi-cont.) 

(dji-4 subj.; si-harm; yi-cont.) 

(si-harm; yi-cont.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
(si-harm; yi-cont.; -o/t-D2 subj.) 
(yi-3 obj.; si-harm; yi-cont.) 

(#o-4 obj.; si-harm; yi-cont.) 

fa-i obj.; si-harm; yi-cont.) 
('a-i obj . ; dji-4 subj . ; si-harm ; yi-cont.) 
3 by 3 yo-- (yi-3 subj.; si-harm; yi-cont.; -yi-3 ag.) 

•td-d (inc.) (-tal) unravel 

-td-d (inc.) (-tal) untie 

-nih (pres.) (-nih) milk 

-gis (mom.) (-gis) unscrew 

-hyi (mom., pres.) (-l-ye-l) one is killed 

-l-x& (mom., pres.) (-l-xi-l) kill one 

Oa- . . ,-bi-h (pres.) (-6f J) lose at gambling (YM 28) 
Dl-i H'tii-bi'h we are losing at gambling 
D2-i H-nohtyh you are losing at gambling 
Oa- nd-cust. . . . -ty-h (cust.) (-ty-l) lose at gambling cust. 
etofc-suspended . . .-T (mom.) set ... up on (as shelf); fasten . . . t< 
(YM 8) 

2 dasi-, dahi- 

3 dasi-, dahi- 9 dahyi- 

rfa/t-forth. . . -'a-c (inc.) (- y ac) two persons are prevented from going 
dah-forth . . . -ya*h (inc.) {-gd-l) one person is prevented from going 
da&-forth. . . -kdh (inc.) (-kah) pi. persons are prevented from going 
xa- . . . -rii-h (inc.) (-riah) crawl up to watch . . . (Ad 1/49 : 9) 
Otcah xa-out...-k£ (pres.) (-ke-l) scold, exert authority with harsl 
words (YM 114) 

2 bitdah xacinikd you are scolding him 

3 yitdah xa-cki he is scolding him 

Otcf na-ahout-xtvi--(<i #o-thmgs-si-harm) . . . -rid (pres.) (-rial) (3 only 

have trouble (YM 146) 
Otdf ni-(na-about)na-cust.-#wi--(< ao-things-si-harm) . . .-rkfh (-rla-l 

(3 only) have trouble cust. (YM 146) 

10.118(1, si-harm si-perfective 

harmful . . . ing has been done, taken place 
. . . has . . . ed harmfully 
. . . has . . . ed harming . . . 

The combination si-harm-si-perfective-7u'-completive gives rise tc 
some of the most intricate contractions of the language. The formi 




illustrate many principles that have already been advanced, 

particularly those concerning the effects of one sibilant on another. 

The dual forms are exactly like those of si-perfective (10.117). 

(si-harm; si-pf. ; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
(si-harm; si-pf. ; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
(st-harm; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

1 si-, si- 

2 sini~ \ 
yini- J 

3 siz-,cij- 

4 dziz- « 
djij- ! 
dzi*z- I 

i 'ase*- 
3-3 yiyi-z- 
1-i 'as^-- 
2-i "asi-ni- 
3-i Vz- 
by 1 sic- 1 
sis- J 
by 2 sini- \ 
yini- J 
by 3 8V- 
3 by 1 yisis- 
3 by 2 yisini- 1 
yiyini- j 
3 by 3 yos- 1 

3 by 4 dzo-s- 1 
'*■ J 

3byDl yisi'd 
3 by D2 yiso-h- 
(3) by i bi'fo-s- 

dji-4: subj.; si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

'a-i subj. ; si-harm; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

yi-Z obj.; si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

'a-i obj.; si-harm; si-pf.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

'ot-i obj. ; si-harm; si-pf. ; -n-2 subj. ; -ni-compl.) 

'a-i obj. ; si-harm ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -c-1 ag.) 

si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -n-2 ag.) 

si-harm; si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -yi-3 ag.) 

yi-3 subj. ; si-harm; si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -c-1 ag.) 

yi-3 subj . ; si-harm ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -n-2 ag.) 
yi-3 subj.; si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -yi-Z ag.) 
2/i-3 subj. ; dji-4 ag. ; si-harm; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

yi-Z subj. ; si-harm ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl. ; -i*d-Dl ag.) 
yi-Z subj.; si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.; -oft-D2 ag.) 
6i-[3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; si-harm ; si-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

-l-ye" (-l-ye4) be called, have the name (NT 306:6) 

-l-yil (-l-y&l) quiet down, become quiet, calm (as weather) 

-l-y\ (-l-yfrl) one is killed 

-l-xi (-l-xfrl) kill one 

•Z}' (abs.) slander, gossip 

-dza* (-rie'l) happen, come to be 

-l-tsil (-l-tiil) break, shatter (as glass) (FH) 

id- . . . -riil (-nil) take apart (Ad 12/48 : 5) 

Ot6f na-about-;ntfi--(< #o-things-si-harm) . . . -rid (-ria-l) have trouble 
(YM 146) 


si-harm optative 

The combination of si-harm with -d-optative has the pattern oi 
do- (10.82d.) with s or y instead of d initial. Note: 

4 djiyo-- (dji-4 subj.; si-harm; -d-opt.) 
3-3 yiy6'- (*/i-3 obj.; si-harm; -d-opt.) 

(3) by 1 bi'fiyd'- (6i-[3] subj.; Wi-i ag. ; si-harm; -d-opt.) 

'odi-self. . . -l-yi-l (-1-yH) commit suicide; kill-self (YM 78) 

3 'adiyolyfrl may he commit siiicide 

4 'ddijyolyi'l may he(4) commit suicide 




If a prefix precedes the conjugation the pattern is the same, but 
the initial is uniformly y or y instead of s : 

'axi-together. . . -le-h {-loh) snare one after another (YM 136) 

3-3 'axi-yole-h may he snare them one after another 
'a- . . . -zq-* (-zq-l) beat wife, spouse (YM 234) 

1 'ayosfy' may I beat my wife 

2 'ayo-zq may you beat your wife 
Dl 'ayo-dzq-' may we beat our wives 

10.118f. si-(nd-) harm continuative 

(si-harm; [nd-]; -c-1 ag.) 
(si-harm; [nd-]; -n-2 ag.) 
(si-harm; [nd-]) 
(si-harm ; nd- ; dji-4, ag. ; [nd-]) 

t (si-harm; [nd-] ; -io*-Dl ag.) 

h ~ 1 (si-harm; [nd-]; -oA-D2 ag.) 









n-(< na-about) . . . -dd (pres.) (-dd-l) 
speech, betting, etc.) (FH) 

one is panicky (about making a 

n-(< na-about) . 


1 -ainde- 

2 -ai*ni- 

3 -ae- 

4 -aidzi- 
Dl -ai-ne-d- 
D2 -ai-noh- 
3—3 -yiae-- 1 

-yiye-- J 

n-(< na-about). 
n-(< na-about). 
n-(< na-about) . , 


ta-c (pres.) (-faC) two are panicky 
.-kaih (pres.) (-kah) pi. are panicky 

-si-(nd-) harm m-perfective 

-td-j (-the) 
-kai (-kah) 
~dzd (-dd-l) 

two are panicky 
pi. are panicky 
one is panicky 

si-yi-ni-h&rm change continuative 

. ing is taking place 
. ing un- . . . ing 
. ing un- . . . ing . . . 

When si-un- is prefixed to the forms of yi-ni-ch&nge continuative 
(10.109.) the following conjugation results : 

... is 
. . . is . . . 


yo-c- \ 

yo-c- J 


yo-- t yo 











D2 yo-h- 

(si-un-; j/i-ni-change; -c-1 subj.) 

(si-un-; t/i-ni-change; -n-2 subj.) 

(si-un- ; 2/i-ni-change) 
(dji-4: subj. ; si-un- ; yi-ni-change) 
('a-i subj. ; si-un- ; yi-ni-change) 
(si-un-; 2/i-ni-change; -id-Dl subj.) 
(si-un-; s/i-ni-change ; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

286 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 10.1 18h-l(). 119. 

1-i 'o-c- ('a-i obj.; si-wi-; yi-ni-change ; -c-1 subj.) 

2-i V- fa-i obj.; si-un-; t/i-ni-change ; -n-2 subj.) 

3-i V- ('a-i obj. ; si-un- ; yi-ni-change) 

4-i 'aefy'o*- ('a-i obj. ; cfy'i-4 subj. ; si-un- ; yi-m-change) 

Dl-i Vd- ('a-i obj.; si-un-; 7/i-m-change; -i-d-T>l subj.) 

D2-i 'eh- ( y a-i obj. ; si-un* ; yi-m -change; -o/i-D2 subj.) 

(3) by i bi'to*- (fei-[3] subj.; 'ad-i ag. ; si-un-; yi-ni -change) 

-&o/fc (pres.) (-kj-Z) plead, beg (NT 260: 16; 262:2) 

-yd (pres.) (-y4'l) kill many one by one (NT 274 : 25) 

-l-t6i- (pres.) (-l-tdi) winnow, sift (FH) 

-t6%d (abs.) avoid 

•l-t&$'d (abs.) be envious, envy . . . (YM 42) 

2 yiniltdi'd you are envious (FH) 
-dlq, (pres.) (-dlq-l) believe (YM 51) 

Oa- . . . -nak (pres.) (-nah) forget about . . . (YM 147) 

Oa- nd-cust. . . . -&$• h (cust.) (-&$•£) (3 only) lose cust. at gambling 

(YM 28) 
ca- ndo-bi'h I cust. lose at gambling 
Oa- nd-cust.-'a-theme. . .-l-tyh (cust.) (4-bi-l) cust. win from ... at 

gambling (YM 28) 
Oa- nd-cust.. . .-nah (cust.) (-Hah) cust. forget about . . . (YM 147) 
ta- . . . -nih (pres.) (-nik) mix (as dough, mortar) (YM 156) 
ta-nd-eust. . . .-Hih (cust.) (-nih) mix (as dough, cement) (YM 156) 
nd-back. . . -'d*d (inc.) (-'al) untie knot, pull out slipknot, unravel 
nd-back. , . -td-d (inc.) (-tal) unfold, unroll fabric (YM 186) 
nd-back. . . -fah (inc.) (-tal) untie something tied to something (as horse 

tied to hitching rack) 
n&-. . >-tcQ'h (pres.) (-tcg-l) destroy, ruin (WM) 
ni-(K nd-cust. )nd-back. . .-'a' (cust.) (-'«£) untie cust. 
n£-(< nd-cust. )nd-back. . .-ta* (cust.) (-tal) unroll, unfold fabric cust. 

(YM 186) 
cd-nd-cust. . . ,-te-h (cust.) (-U-1) acquire (YM 197) 
teo-nd-cust. . . .-l-'j-h (cust.) (-l-'j-l) sue (YM 103) 

10.119. dzi-away progressive 

. . . ing away is taking place progressively 
. . . is . . . ing away progressively 
. . . is . . . ing . . . away progressively 

The conjugation of dzi-away corresponds closely with that of yi- 
progressive (10.102.) with dz instead of y initial. It is given to show 
the consonant changes due to contraction of sibilants. 

" > (dzi-away; yi-prog. ; -c-1 subj.) 

1 dzeu 

2 dzi-- (dzi-a>w&y; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 dzo'- (dzi-away; yi-pvog.) 

J^JtZ' ) W* -4 sub J" ; ^i-away ; yi-pvog.) 


i 'adzo*- ('a-i subj.; dzi-aw&y; yi-prog.) 

Dl dzi-d- (dzi-away; yi-prog.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

D2 dzo'h- (dzi-away; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.) 

Plural: Prefix da-p\. to the dual forms, and note the order with 
the indefinite pronoun : 

10.119.-10.l20a. PREtftXES ^87 

Pl-i dzida'i-d- (dzi-away; ria-pl.; *a-i obj.; yi-prog.; 4d-T>\ subj.) 

-T (prog.) 

4-^c lightning 

-leal slap 

-2-#a2 club, beat with club, stick 

-djih claw 

10.119a. dzi-away continuative 

there is . . . ing away 
. . . is . . . ing away 
. . . is . . .ing . . . away 

The continuative of dzi-aw&y is like that of di-start from (10.88.) 
with dz instead of d initial. 

10.119b. dzi-away m-perfective 

dzi-away differs from cK-start from in having a wi-perfective of the 
type tfzi-m-perfective-m-completive > dzi-. This fact differentiates 
the meaning of dzi-away from 'a-beyond in that dzi- seems always 
to denote that the subject has control of the object that moves 
away, whereas 'a-beyond (with j/i-perfective) has the idea of more 
indefinite and more continuous motion. 

10.119c. dzi-away yi-perfective 

When dzi-away is combined with other prefixes with a less 
definite meaning it takes yi-perfective, like di-emit t/i-perfective 
(10.88b.) with dz instead of d initial. Note : 

4 dzidji*- (dzt-away ; dji-4 subj. ; yi-prog. ; -ni-compl.) 
(3) by i biHdo-- (6i-[3] subj.; 'adi-i ag. ; dzi-aw&y ; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

10.120. ^'-uncertain progressive 

^-uncertain, confused, doubtless a compound prefix, is found 
with few stems, particularly verbs of thought and consideration. 
The conjugation of the progressive is comparable with 'a-thus 
(10.80.), but since the vowel is -i- the contractions differ somewhat. 

1 ts6-s- (£si-uncertain; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

2 tsi-~ (tei-uncertain; yt-prog.; -n-2 subj.) 

3 tsfr- (Jsi-uncertain; yi-j>Tog.) 

4 tsidjo-- (tei-uncertain; rf/i-4 subj.; yi-prog.) 
Dl tai-d- (tei-uncertain; yi-prog.; -vd-Dl subj.) 
D2 tsi-h- (tei-uncertain ; j/i-prog.; -oh-D2 subj.) 

Plural: prefix tsi-da- to regular duals, or preferably use tsi-yini- 
reciprocal effect continuative plurals (10.111b.). 

. . . -Ia4 move along seeking safety 

n-(< na-about) . . . -kos think about, consider in thought 

10.120a. to'-(7wi-)uncertain continuative 

. . . is . . . ing in a confused way 

288 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 10.120a.-10.l2lb. 

•to'-(7w£-)continuative has the same forms as tdi-(nd-)out (10,123a.) 
with ts instead of td initial. 

Oa- na-about . . . -ke^s (pres.) (-kos) think about . . . , consider . . . 

10.120b. to'-(wd-)uncertain si-perfective 

. . . has been uncertain about . . . 

Prefix tsi- to regular forms of si-(7wi-)perfective (10.117a.) and 

3 -tsiz- (^{-uncertain; st-pf. ; [wo-]) 

4 -tsidziz- (£si-uncertain; dji-4 subj.; si-pf.; [nd-]) 

Oa' no-about. . .-kd-z (-kos) think about . . ., consider . . . 

10.121. d?i-attitude 

dji- is a prefix that expresses attitudes and emotions ; it seems to 
be combined with si-harm in some conjugations, dji- must be 
differentiated from dzi-away since some phonetic effects overlap 
because of the contacts of sibilants. 

10.121a* djr -attitude future 

dji*- < dji-si- is prefixed to the regular forms of the future (10.87.). 
The conjugation is given to indicate the limitations and compromises 
made by the competition of sibilants. 

J . , t [ (aji-att.; si-harm; di-fut.; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.) 

J *•*/£• I (tyi-tott. ; si-harm ; di-fut. ; t/i-prog. ; -n-2 subj .) 

3 dp-do- \ (^. a tt. ; si-harm ;di-fut.; yi-prog.) 
dzi'do-- ) 

4 djidji'do-^ 

dzi-jdo*- \ {dji-att. ; si-harm; d/jiA subj. ; rfi-fut. ; yi-prog.) 
dzi'zdo- i 

Dl dji-di-d- "I (^i-att.; si-harm; di-fut.; yi-prog.; -rd-Dl subj.) 
dzi'di-d- J 

D2 dji-do-h- 1 (^. at t. ; si-harm; di-fut.; yi-prog.; -o/t-D2 subj.) 

dzt-do'h- J 
3-3 yidzi'do- (yi-3 obj.; dji-att.; si-harm; di-fut.; yi-prog.) 

. . . -la*l hate 

Oa* . . . -ba-l aid, pity enough to give aid (YM 21) 

Oa- . . .-li-l trust (YM 133) 

10.121b. dyi-attitude continuative 

. . . has . . . attitude, emotion 

Some forms, as dji-nic- and dzi*wi*d-continuative and s/i-perfective 
suggest that some speakers consider the compound of a nature 
corresponding with dzi-yi-m'-reciprocal effect (10.1 1 lb.), rather than 
dji-si-haxm, but such an interpretation is not borne out by the 
future, or most of the continuative forms, c of the fourth person 

10.l21b.-10.12ld. PBEFIXES 289 

continuative and the treatment of the sibilants, as well as the 
position of the prefixes in the perfective, favor the interpretation as 
at-hann : 

si-harm; yi-cont.; -c-1 subj.) 

1 djdc- 1 (d n.att. 
dyvmc- J 



1 (d/i-att. 

o-,dz6--\ (dji _ att 
djo- J 


yidjoc 1 (d -.. att 

D1 ?v d ; , ) (*»-»tt. 

D2 dzoh- 1 (d -.. att 

si-harm; yi-cont.; -n-2 subj.) 

si-harm; yi-cont.) 

si-harm; ety*i-4 subj.; yi-cont.) 

si-harm; yi-cont.; -i-d-Dl subj.) 

si-harm; yi-cont.; -oh-D2 subj.) 
si-harm; dji-4 ag.; yi-cont.) 

by 4 yidji- (dji-att. 

-6a' (mom.) -fea-/t (pres.) (-bad) aid through pity, be generous (YM 21) 

-Id (pres.) (-la-l) come to hate, dislike (YM 138); abandon because of 
hate (AB) 

-did (pres.) {-dla-l) be hated (YM 138) 

Oa- . . . -ZSfc (pres.) (-li-l) trust, be able to call on . . . (YM 34) 

Oa- *aya-ti\t-xo-...4i-h (mom., inc.) (4i-l) be suspicious of . . . 
(EW 114:19) 

Oa- na*-again. . . -lih (pres.) (-li-l) be able to call on another 

Oa- nei-(< nd-cust.-si-harm). . .-dli-h (cust.) (-dli-l) opponent has some- 
one to call on (YM 134, FH) 

*dda- 'a-beyond. . .-dlih (pres.) (-dlH) throw the bluff, bluff . . . 

fa- 01 na--again. . . -l-yh, (mom.) (-l-'i-l) be in the same "fix," "chickens 
come home to roost" 

fo- ... -Id (pres.) (-la-l) really hate, despise 

10.121c. dyi-attitude 2/i-perfective 

. . . has had . . . attitude 

1 djo- (dji-att.; si-harm; yi-prog.; -c-1 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

2 dzi-ni- (d/i-att.; si-harm; yi-prog.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

°,~ \ (rf/i-att.; si-harm; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

d]o- J 
4 yidjo- (dji-att.; si-harm; d?"i-4subj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 
Dl dzi-nvd- (cfy'i-att.; si-harm; yi-prog.; -ni-compl. ; -i-d-Dl subj.) 
D2 dzi'no-- (dji-att.; si-harm; yi-prog.; -oh-T>2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
3-3 yidzo- (dji-att.; si-harm; yi-3 obj.; yi-prog.; -ni-compl.) 

Oa* . . . 4%^ (4i-l) trust, have confidence in . . . (YM 134) 
Oa- 'a-theme . . . 4i-' (-li-l) be dependable (YM 134) 
t'd- Ona- . . . -l-ya* (4-ne-l) have the same trouble; don't laugh you may 
have the same difficulties; "chickens come home to roost" (FH) 

10.121d. etyi-attitude si-perfective 

Prefix dji'- or dv- to regular forms of si-perfective (10.117.) and 


3 dzo'Z- (cf/i-att.; si-harm; si-pf.; -ni-compl.) 

4 dzidzo-z- \ 

dzidjo-z- > (dji-att.; si-harm; rfy'i-4 subj.; si-pf.; -ni-compl.) 
djidjo'8- ) 

2dO stavabo aiAMMAS 10.121d =10:123. 

" > (dji-att.; *i-harm; st-pf. ; -wi-compl.; -i-dl-Dl subj.) 

D2 dziso'- (dji'&tt.-, *i-harm; *t-pf.; -0&-D2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 
3-3 yidzo-z- (yt-3 obj.; «ty*-«vtt.; s^-harm; si-pf. ; -m-compl.) 
(3) by i bidjVto-8- (6t-[3] subj.; (tyi-att.; 'adi-i ag.; «t-harm; *t-pf.; -ni- 

-6a 1 (-ba-l) aid, treat kindly because of pity (YM 21) 

•l-ni-' (-l-ni-l) trust 

-Id-' (-la-l) hate, abandon (YM 138) 

-did-' (-dla-l) be hated (YM 138) 

Oa- . ..-Zi*' (-li-l) trust, depend upon ..., count on . . . foi* help, 

expect help from . . . (YM 134) 
Oe- Oa- . ..-ba' (-ba-l) treat . . . to . . . (YM 21) 

. . . be- ba> dji-s&a' I treated him to . . . (YM 21) 
wa-about-'a-theme. . . -Zf (-li-l) trust 

10.122. teo-useful future 

. . . will be useful 
. . . will be used 

The prefix tcoi- 7 sometimes tei~ or tcv- seems to be a compound, 
possibly of tco-yi~ni- (10.109.). To form the future prefix tcoi- or 
tci'- to regular forms of the future (10.87.) and note: 

tcoycto-- I ftci-uBefu\; svharm; dn-4subj.; ot-fut; yi-prog.) 
tci-ydo-- ) 
(3) by i tcobidi'fo-- (ico-useful; bi-[3] subj. ; dt-fut. ; 'adi-i ag. ; yt-prog.) 

• f i-l be useful (YM 102) 
-l-'i'l be used 

10.123. tdi-out future 

. . .ing out will take place 

. . .will . . . out 

. . . will move . . . out 

Prefix tdi-out to regular future forms (10.87.) and note: 

4 tdijdo-- (tdi-out; dji-4 subj. ; dt-fut. ; y^-prog.) 
3-3 tdi-do-- (tdi-out; yi-S obj.; di-fut.; yt-prog.) 

-'d-l divulge, make known facts, knowledge (YM 5) 
-l-bqs roll wagon, car out, drive out (YM 22) 
* -dil dart, move out suddenly 
-xak winter comes (YM 93) 
-cf-l summer begins (YM 178) 

£&*-(< tdi-out-nd-back) . . . -dq-l spring returns 

t66--(<i t6i-out-nd-ba,ck) • • • -t'e-l free one person, release (as from jail) 

td6--(< tdi-out-nd-back). . .-nil pi. persons are freed, released (as from 


3 tdineido-riil they will be freed 

(3) by i t66'bidi'fo"riil they will be freed by someone 
2d£-out--(< 'a-beyond) . . . -l-dyl keep fighting to survive, survive (YM 

£<5i-out--(< 'a-beyond) . . . -l-bal hang curtain out 
fc5i-out--(< 'a-beyond) . . . -l-dil dart out beyond 

10.123.-10. 123b. 



tdi-out-di-emit . . ,4SqI lean out 

tdi-out-di- . . . -l-dloh baby smiles first time (YM 54, FH) 

tdi-out-cft-start. . .-tlic one animate obj. falls out (of window, car, 

wagon) (YM 215) . . . -'ac two persons go out rep. -l-bal curtain flaps 

, . -gd-l one person goes out rep. 

, . -kah pi. persons go out rep. 

tdi-out-^ . 
tdi - out -#i -rep .ac. . 

1 tddc- 


2 tdini- 


3 tdd- 


4 tdidji- 

(id* -out 

i td&d- 


Dl tdvd- 


D2 tdo-h- 


P4 tdidadji- 


3-3 tdiyi- 


P3-3 tdidayi- 


1-i tdd'dc- 


2-i tdVi- 


3-i td&d- 


4-i «<5i7<i{- 


by i tdibi'te*- 


-T(inc) .. 


10.123a* fctf-(na-)start out continuative 

. . . ing out is starting 
... is starting to . . . out 
... is starting to ... it out 

The prefix combination t6i-out-{nd~) results in the following: 

[no-]; -c-1 subj.) 

[wd-]; -n-2 subj.) 


dji-4 subj. ; [nd-]) 

*a-i subj.; [nd-]) 

[nd-]; -i-d-T>\ subj.) 

[nd-]; -oh-D2 subj.) 

da-pl. ; dji-4 subj. ; [nd-]) 

yi-Z obj.; [nd-]) 

da-pl. ; yi-3 obj. ; [nd-]) 

'a-i obj.;[nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

'a-i obj.; [nd-]; -n-2 subj.) 

'a-i obj.; [nd-]) 

'a-i obj.; dji-4 subj.; [nd-]) 

fci-[3] subj. ; 'adi-i ag. ; [nd-]) 


- y a-h (inc.) (-'d-t) divulge information 
-l-bq-s (inc.) (-l-bqs) drive out wagon, car 
-l-de-l (inc.), -1-dU (mom.) (-l-dil) dart out, move out suddenly 
-fa-h (inc.) (-td-l) information is divulged 
-gd-c (inc.) (-gic) cut off with blade 
•yd-h (inc.) (-gd-l) one person goes straight ahead 
•xd'h (inc.) (~xah) winter starts 
•tdg-d (inc.) (-tfyl) lean out (YM 226) 
-cf-h (inc.) (-cf-l) summer starts (YM 178) 
-dla-d (pres.) (-dla-l) rope is tearing 
-tlvc (inc.) (-tlic) person falls out of . . . (car, window) 

10.123b. tti-(na-) out ni-perfective 

. . . ing out has terminated 
. . . has . . . ed out 
. . . has . . . ed ... out 

Prefix tdi-out to regular m-perfective forms (10.99a.) and note: 

2 tdi*ni- (tdi-out; nt-pf.; -n-2 subj.; -ni-compl.) 

by 3 tdi- (tdi-out; ni-pf.; -ni-compl. ; -yi-3 ag.) 

by 4 tdidjd- (tdi-out ; dji-4: ag. ; ni-pf. ; -ni-compl.) 

-T (pf.) move . . . out 

-'d (abs.) arm is sticking out 

-d/d*' (-djah) pi. persons run out 

292 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 10.123c.-10.124 

10.123c. td{-oci'(nd-) out repeated action continuative 

. . . is . . . ing out repeatedly 
. . . is . . . ing . . . out repeatedly 

Prefix t6i-out to regular xi-(nd-) repeated action continuative 
forms (10.114L) and note: 

1 t6ix4e- (£di-out;; [nd-]; -c-1 subj.) 

3 tdiyi'- (Mi-out;; [nd-]) (FH) 

4 tdidji-- (tdi-out ; dji-4 subj. ; xi-rep.&c. ; [nd-]) 
3-3 tdiyv- (tdi-out; yi-Z obj.; ; [nd-]) 

- T (inc.) take . . . out one at a time, carry out one at a time 

-'a*c (inc.) (-'ac) two persons go out one at a time, two go out repeatedly 
-kd-h (inc.) (-kah) pi. persons go out one at a time, pi. persons go out 

-yd-h (inc.) (-gd*l) one person goes out repeatedly 

10.124. K-natural m-absolute 

Prefix ti-natural, inherent, to regular forms of ni-absolute (10.97.) 
and note: 

3 U- (&-nat. ; ni-abs.) 

4 djil- 1 

djil- \ (&-nat. ; dji-4t subj. ; m-abs.) 
lidji- * 

1 w I ('a-i subj.; &-nat.; m-abs.) 

-gai be white 

-kan b© sweet, savory, tasty 

-kon be inflammable 

-kol be rough, folded 

-tsoi be yellow 

-jin be black 

-tci*' be red 

11-11.118. SYNTAX 

11-11.25. Position of Elements 

11. As noted, the word is an utterance, the simplest form being 
the consonant-vowel or consonant-vowel-consonant: to "it is water," 
le? "let (may) it be," ni "it is a fact," sg' "it is a star." With a 
selection of nouns, some monsyllabic, a certain amount of communi- 
cation can be carried on. With an understanding of demonstratives 
and postpositions many elementary ideas can be conveyed, that is, 
utterances or sentences may be constructed. However, though the 
English speaker may put off his mastery of the verb, there can be no 
idiomatic or satisfactory communication without verbs. It has been 
pointed out that nouns are often verb forms without any modifica- 
tion whatsoever. 

11.1. The position of the noun in the sentence will be discussed 
next, but, before taking up the subject, it should be pointed out that 
once a number of elements have been combined into a complex, the 
complex functions as a whole, being from then on regarded and 
treated as the particular "part of speech" for the occasion. For 
example, a descriptive noun built from a verb is thereafter treated 
syntactically as a noun, and though it may have a verbal form, its 
function in the utterance is that of a noun : 

dlfiQ-yaji "little prairie dog" is a noun-verb compound, but in a 
sentence behaves like a noun — dlg'Qy&ji xayvci'j "he poked out a 
little prairie dog." 

bd 'oltaH "the-one-for-whom-reading-is-caused" but once the 
combination of verb and postpositional complex has been made and 
nominalized, the unit "teacher" is treated as a noun in the utterance. 

dine baocastvn do'le'li' "the man her husband the-one-who-was-to- 
be" (NT 312:26) is a complex of two nouns and a verb bound to- 
gether by a nominalizer; the whole complex is the subject of the 
sentence, "the man who is to be her husband." 

djo-l be ndadjinehigi* is a compound "ball with-it that-which- 
they(4)-throw-about," but it is treated as a noun meaning "ball- 

11.2. The subject noun, whatever its form, usually stands before 
the verb : 

20* 293 

294 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 11.2.-11.6. 

id aik4 there is water, water is contained 

mq'i' yd-'elyod coyote ran off 

ya' *&ni louse said 

kin cijd'd there was a large masonry house 

xasti-n ylstin the man is frozen. 

The objective noun may stand alone before the verb. The pro- 
nominal subject is a part of the verb form, which also indicates 
whether the verb has a pronominal object or not. Consequently, the 
Navaho subject and object noun are undifferentiated if only one is 

tsin niidi'ttf, he picked up a stick 
nd't'ostse' neidi-\i he picked up a pipe 
le-tsa-' yilndd I licked the plate 
'atsi' yiyq he is eating meat 
'a^*' yictci she bore a baby 

11.3. If the nominal subject and object are mentioned, the sub- 
ject may stand first, the object next, and the verb after the object, 
the order being subject-object-verb: 

H-rii* 1{ K na- 'ayi-lfe* lightning knocked the horse over; lightning 

horse aside caused-live-obj.-to-fall 
bd y 6lta*i nixada? altcini neintin the teacher instructs our children; the- 

teacher our-children he-instructs-them (YM 210) 

11.4. The discussion of pronouns has shown that the position of 
nominal subject and object in the sentence influences the choice of 
the pronominal object of the verb. In the examples of 6.24. the 
object is yi~. If the nominal order is object-subject instead of subject- 
object, the objective pronoun is bi-. 

11.5. The subject of the passive verb, like the nominal subject of 
the verb in the active voice, precedes the verb : 

xake^ xajdvdld he(4) removed his(4) moccasins; his(4)-moccasins were- 

moved-out-by-him(4) (HC 4:18) 
xa'Ct66'ltiH djo-lyi Talking God was called; Talking-God he(4)-was- 

to dide-cgol I will drain the water; water will-be-dug-(ditch made)- 


11.6. If the subject and agent of the passive verb are both nominal, 
the subject stands first, the agent next, followed by the verb — 
subject-agent-verb. This order corresponds with the position in the 
active voice and with the relationship between active voice object 
and passive voice subject, and active voice subject and passive 
agent : 

*altso nayi-' dabo-ldid (earth people) all were devoured by the mon- 
sters; all monsters they-were-devoured-by-(them) (EW 14:22) 

gah dloh nabig#-h cottontails died laughing; cottontails laughter were- 

djddi dini bi-ayf (< bi-si-l-yi) the antelope was killed by the man 

11.7.-11.10. SYNTAX 295 

11.7. The possessed noun, if it is the only noun expressed, has the 
same position as the unpossessed noun, whether it is subject, object, 
or agent ; 

rij6*4 ca- yiniUf my father gave it (animal) to me; my-father to-me 

moved -animate - ob j . 
cvna-ltso-8 na-lne' I dropped my book; my -book I-caused-it-a-small- 

obj. -to-move-down 
nibi-j nabi-cgij he was cut by your knife 
'awd-* bamq yizyas the baby scratched its mother 

11.8. If the possessor and the possessed object are expressed 
nominally, the name of the possessor stands first : 

tcidi bike-' naritfih the tire is wobbling; car its-foot is-moving-about- 

dini baxastvn dode-l the man is to be her husband; man her-husband 

will -become 
ci]€6 bili' 1 ca- yiniltf my father gave me his horse; my-father his-horse 

to-me he-moved-it-live-obj. 

11.9. Since the postpositions are so essential to the relationship 
between nouns, pronouns and verbs, it seems best not to use the 
term "indirect object," which is a doubtful reality even in English. 
The meanings of the postpositions are idiomatic, and differ so much 
from the meanings of the prepositions in English that they can be 
mastered only by practice and careful attention to usage. The ex- 
ample "give to," a favorite to demonstrate the indirect object in 
English, must in Navaho be considered from the viewpoint of post- 
position, prefix and stem; literally "give it to me" means "to-me 
you-start-to-move- . . .-obj.-to-goal," and the most unusual part of 
the thought is the choice of the descriptive verb. The inceptive stem 
with nt-start for (goal) is one of the active descriptive stems (cp. 

Obviously such constructions have little in common with the 
indirect object. 

11.10. Another favorite English example for the indirect object is 
"say, tell." In Navaho something is said "toward, facing" someone; 
the postposition is usually -t6£ "toward the general direction of" in 
distinction to -a* "to the end of ... , for, on account of ... , and -dji' 
"to a definite point" : 

mq'%- bit6f 'dni Coyote spoke thus to them 

mq,*i- yitdf xadade^cyaj they shouted at coyote 

belagd'fia' bit6\ ydcW I am speaking to a white man (YM 206) 

Postpositions vary greatly in idioms : 

'ddil ydltV he is talking to himself; with-self talking-is-being-caused 

(YMG 59) 
la? dini bil da*nl{ some Navaho approve; some Navaho with-it they -are 
'aw4- i bamfy V^ nlf the baby loves its mother; baby its-mother with-her, 

it -is 

296 KAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.11.-11.14. 

11.11. Actually in Navaho, as in English, the verbs of speaking are 
idiomatic in meaning and structure. Comparable with "tell" in 
English is ni which may take a direct object: xalni "she told 
him(4); she-causes-telling-him(4)." If the meaning is "communicate 
with him," the form is be' xol ni "by-means-of-it with-him(4) she- 
says." Compare also bijdirii "he is being told by her(4);" bidvrivd 
"he was told by her;" and bidjini tcaxalze'l "they(4) ask him dark- 
ness; they(4)-say-(to)-him darkness." 

11.12. Some of these constructions which may seem like indirect 
objects are treated in the same way as all postpositions. It seems 
practical therefore to learn how such postpositions function, then to 
learn the specific ones required by usage. Such postpositions, very 
numerous in Navaho sentences, are sometimes suffixed directly to a 
noun ; more often they have the same position as the possessed noun. 

kin-tah town; houses-among (cp. bi-tah "among them") 
ts4-dj} y niniyd I went up to the rock; rock-to-a-point end-I-arrived-at 
tsHd^-dji'* ni"da' he crawled to the edge of the cliff; rock-edge-to-a- 
point end-he-arrived-at-crawling 

11.13. The position of the postposition and of the prefixed pro- 
noun must be carefully differentiated, and particularly, the three 
third persons should be distinguished : 

wwfc'i* yitdf xade-cya'j he (first third person) shouted at coyote (second 
third person) ; in this example yi- refers to coyote. 

mq'f bitty djini he(4) said to coyote; coyote toward-him he(4)-says. 
bi- here refers to coyote, the only third person, because the subject 
is the fourth person (dji-). 

Examples of this sort need a context in which a speaker assigns a 
third person form to one third person, a fourth person form to a 
second third person — the speaker should thenceforth consistently 
differentiate the two throughout his speech. 

11.14. The following are examples of the position and function of 
postpositions in simple gentences : 

'axil xaxodine-lne* we spent our time talking; with (accompaniment )- 

each-other things-were-communicaied-prolongatively-by-us 
citcidi oil ndxidi-UHd my car overturned while I was in it; my -car with 

(accompaniment)-me was-caused-to-turn-over 
V* 1 bq-h sinih I wrung out the clothes; clothes along-them I-did-with- 

my-hand (YM 155) 
'altdf sinih I squeezed them together; toward-each-other-reciprocally 

I-did-with-my -hands 
sizd bq-h yilnd-d I licked by lips; my -mouth along-it I-licked (YM 150) 
tcidi bi-h nind-h get into the car; car into-it you-go 
dlef J altdf 'dde-cU-l I'll clench my fist; my-fingers toward-each-othcr 

I-shall-do-thus (YM 130) 

cij4*6 If'* ca- yinlt\ my father gave me a horse; my -father horse to-me 
caused-it-live-ob j . -to-move 

11.15.-11.18. SYNTAX 297 

11.15. The following are more complicated examples of nominal 
order : 

dilyi'd bidU$' xani^ be^jniyac he(4) had streaked his(4) face with 
Burrowing Monster's blood; Burrowing Monster its-blood-afore- 
mentioned his(4)-face with-it-he(4)-had-streaked (note that this is 
not a passive verb, be- "with-it" expresses what might otherwise be 
an agent) 

bito y xaxa'sriilido- 'e-cdld-* I took a drink from the well ; well-from some- 

xasti-n gd'ni bayango- ni-lbfyz we drove to Hastin Gani's home; Mr. 
Arm his -home -toward rolling-to-end-was-caused-by-us 

naxasdzd'n bikd-' H-nd zd-fi' life began on the earth, earth on-it life 
strung-out (YM 200) 

na-be-ho bikiyah bikd-do- xacVfo'dzil I was forced off the Navaho 
reservation ; Navaho their-land from-on-it out-against-me-force- 
was-exerted-by-someone (YM 60) 

cikdyah bikd^do* to dide-cgol I'll drain the water off my land; my -land 
from-on-it water will-be^dug-by-me (YM 90) 

bibfrj ca* ayi-lge-d he ran his knife into me; his-knife toward-me he- 

11.16. Independent pronouns, usually used for emphasis, have 
approximately the same position as nouns : 

fd' bi Uiyd yfrxosin he is the only one who knows him ; just he alone he- 

knows-him (YM 198) 
ei be 'dda* xodicni I am going to tell you about myself; I by-means-of- 

it self-on-account-of I-am-starting-to-say-things 
ci be* nil xodicni I am going to tell you about it ; I by-means-of-it with 

(accompaniment) -you I-am-starting-to-say-things 

11.17. The use of several nouns in juxtaposition is relatively rare ; 
the descriptive verb takes the place of one or the other in many 
cases. Often a demonstrative is used instead of the repetition of the 
noun. Moreover, although the pronominal system is well developed, 
the Navaho does not always keep the subjects and objects clear. 
Even if he does, it often happens that he uses demonstratives and 
pronouns for long speeches, so that a nominal reference may occur 
only at the introduction of the subject under consideration (cp. 

11.18. Nouns and other forms sometimes follow the verb : 

— djini djin 'dtsi. xasti-n . . .(in quotes) First Man said it is said; 

quotation he(4)-said it-is-said First Man (EW 84 : 5) 
nltsq, 'acki- kdnd-ndfy'l Id be'ekid na\ydi Rainboy was thus captured 

again by Lake Traveler (Frog); rain boy thus-he-was-again-being- 

done-thus-to-prog. truly lake traveler (HC 18:8) 
koci' Afa*' *dyi-la* 'ayfrhi* here arrows were made by the husband; here- 

probably arrows were-made (by)-the-particular-one-who-married 


298 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.18.-11.21. 

ci 'ade'gQ'j ni djini mq'p I am the one who stuffs sausage coyote said 

they say; I some-entrails-are-stuffed he-says they -say coyote (WE) 
'aadzdni to ya*yi-zi' 'ade-'Q- biyi'dj}' the woman pours water into the 

gourd; the-woman water she-pours-it gourd-aforementioned in-it- 

ndltlah dibi biUah be' it (baby) is rubbed with tallow; it-is-rubbed-with- 

salve sheep its-fat with-it (NT 280:21) 

11.19. The character of the sentence with nouns, pronouns, and 
postpositional complexes has been indicated, but examples of 
Navaho sentences are rarely found with such simple forms. More 
often, the sentence abounds in demonstratives — pronouns, adjec- 
tives, adverbs, some of which may be independent forms, or they 
may be prefixes, suffixes, or enclitics. Many such elements are 
almost impossible to translate, but as in most languages, they are of 
the utmost importance. A study of such elements as the indefinite 
demonstrative adverbs, 'a-, 'a*-, and 'a-, ko, ko> and 1cq\ or the 
combinations into which fd- "just, actually, really, absolutely" 
enters will give an excellent idea of Navaho idiom. 

11.20. Demonstrative words precede the verb; in fact, the verb 
tends to be the last word in the sentence, although there are ex- 
ceptions, as we have seen (11.18.). 

The demonstrative adjectives (pronouns) immediately precede 
the noun they point out : 

di- nadtao-8 yd^ani'&'h take this book away; this book move-round- 
ob j . -out -of-sight 

di- bd-h nim# bitdj* dVa*h take this bread to your mother; this bread 
your-mother toward-her start-from-moving-round-obj. 

J ei* gdliji yd^anUch take that skunk away; that-near-you skunk cause- 
live-obj.-to-move-out-of -sight 

'ei* tozis cd nanVa-h take that jar down for me; that-near-you water- 
sack for-my-benefit move-round-obj.-down 

'M ta6jin la' bi'hini'l put some of those black rocks in it; those-remote 
basalt-rocks someinto-it-move-pl.-separate-obj.-to-goal (EW 120:7) 

11.21. Adverbs usually precede the verb, often they have first 
place in the sentence. Note also that temporal elements or words 
precede locatives: 

yisk4'go' si'Ice* we two shall be home tomorrow; tomorrow-future we- 
two-are-at-home(sit) (stat.) 

'afte-dgo dibiydji dane-attah leh in fall the lambs are usually fat ; being- 
fall sheep-young they-are-fat (stat.) customarily (YM 141) 

"a-dicf- bil nndxindi-l there perhaps it glided with them; there-at-prob- 
ably with-them long-flexible-obj. -moved -back 

Uad df-gi ba-tx^ 'o-Zde*' now at the four places where the group attacked 
him; now four-in-place to-him-attacking group-moved-off 

fd-ci-dq-'di kg' 'ddin for a long time there had been no fire; absolutely - 
past-at fire there-was-none 

Iq'idi na'lyihi bd xo-yango* nsiyd I have often gone to the store; many- 
times store-along-toward I-have-gone-about 

11.22.-11.25. syntax 299 

11.22. Several adverbs may occur in juxtaposition: 

'a-djf 'a-d4' y yah'and-dzd then he went inside again; toward-a-point- 

there from-there he-came-back-in 
tiidd fd- 'iyisi- ye- yisnfr 'dxo-la- by high pressure she must have been 

seduced; inevitably (must) exceedingly by-means-of-him slave she- 
was -made 
'aki-dfr' nahd^ 'd-d^ "a-d^ daxi-zy bi'to-rli-d each was told to stand a 

short distance from the next one; the-next-one aside-from from- 

there-remote from-there-near-you on-it-they-stand-rep. they-were- 

djo ko xo-%'d so this is what happened (YM 160) 
biMidqV xadah HH-Hil we dropped bombs on it; over-it-to-a-point down- 

in-space we-moved-some-pl.-obj. -beyond (YM 164) 
tU-'go tid-di nicU-h leh I usually sleep outdoors; night-being outside-at 

I-animate-obj.-lie customarily (YM 214) 
'dho Id 'dxodjini- leh that is the proper way for a person to speak 

(EW 120:11) 
'a-do- J a-d4'' bi-h nind-h get in then; then (from-a-point) from-there 

into-itgo(EW 120:13) 

11.23. Adverbs may be placed after the verb : 

cijd't xi-nd xd-hd^ when my father was alive; my-father he-was-living 

ci 'dcla-y$- 'dt'fr casein maybe it is the one I made; I the-one-known-to- 

be-made-by-me it-is maybe (YM 177) 

11.24. Adverbs may occur between the subject and verb: 

xa*ct64-UiH 'ddi xwelyod Talking God overtook him(4); Talking God 

there -remote -at he(4)-was-run-up-to 
xala* 'alfydji* nli-ni her(4) oldest brother; her-brother ahead the-one- 

who-is (WE) 
tcidi tfrdjigo nd-bqs car is rolling backward (no one is in it) ; car back- 

ward-toward -point-being is-rolling-back 
tcidi fy-djigo nd-lbas back the car; car reversing-toward cause-to-roll- 
tcidi fy-djigo nnd'Mbfrs turn the car around; car reversing-toward 

cause-rolling-back -to-end-again 
tcidi fq'djigo bit nd-dd-l the car is going backward; car backward-to- 

ward-a-point-being with-him it-is-moving-back (YM 195) 
dibiydji Mad xaxatlvc lambs are now being dropped; lambs now are- 


11.25. The following show the order of various types of words: 

le-j xd-djici* to bil 'adaxa*z > 6-l time after time the water washed away 

the soil; soil somewhere-probably water with-it it-repeatedly- 

floated-beyond (FS 25) 
ce- nikixonilt$ it started to rain on me; by-means-of-me causing-long- 

streaks-arrived-in-place-touching-the-earth (YM 208) 
Mary yolyi na-ltso'8 bitty 'dcle-h I am writing to Mary; Mary she-is- 

called letter toward-her I-am-doing-thus 
dzU bitty *ayo- 'dniza-d it is far to the mountain; mountain to-it very 

it-is-relatively-far (YM 26) 
to be ^atsinltlic daxi-lna-h we generate electricity by means of water; 

water by-means-of-it lightning we-cause-to-move (live) (YM 145) 
biUih bitty nVte-cU-l I'll pay him for it; its-value toward -him I -shall - 

lay-something-down (YM 128) 

300 navaho grammar 11.26.-11.28. 

11,26-11.54. Syntactic Elements 

11*26. Throughout this discussion, particularly in the examples 
cited, there have been short words, apparently free forms, which 
sometimes hardly have a meaning, but which often express relation- 
ships. Two functions of such words are outstanding; sometimes they 
are combined in a single monosyllabic form. One of these functions 
is evidential, explaining on what basis a statement or observation 
is made. The most common of these is probably ni "he says," or the 
fourth person equivalent, djini ''someone says, it is said," and 
indeed both may be used. After a direct quotation ni may refer to 
the person who made the statement, and the following djini refers 
to the fact that the whole story or statement may be hearsay. The 
Navaho speaker is quite wary about taking responsibility for what 
he says; he is apt to use some qualifying word. 

11.27. A second function of such words is temporal; in this 
respect time may be expressed by one of the progressive or con- 
tinuative aspects and one of the temporal or temporal-evidential 
words. Most of these are a matter of vocabulary, but examples will 
be given to show their relational significance — such words are 
hardly used independently. 

The listing, as usual, is alphabetical, but the following scheme 
shows some patterning and the relationship some of these words 
bear to one another. 

A temporal sequence may parallel the verbal aspect and system 
classification : 

Future do-le-l it will be, it is decreed 

Customary leh, or li customarily, usually, habitually 

Present ga' verifiable at the present time, but not necessarily in the 

vicinity of the speaker or speakers 
Past M-\ iity' used to be, but is no longer, hence, sometimes 


11.28. A classification of elements indicating evidence would 
include : 

ye-' verifiable in the vicinity of speaker or speakers 

ga' verifiable but not necessarily in the speakers' vicinity 

y$-h verifiable in the past, but no longer verifiable, although possibly 
still existent; with future, "wish" 

y$-ni' verifiable in the past, but no longer existent (probably com- 
pounded of y$-h and ni' "past known" 

ni for a fact, it's a fact 

ni' experienced' by speaker in the past, I recall, possibly still existent; 
compare with nty' "used to be but is no longer" 

ni he says 

djini it is said, someone says 

la' true, but unexplained, it seems (AB thinks this is momentary as 
compared with leh customary. 11.53.) 

11.28.-11.32. SYNTAX 301 

Id present evidential but unexplained, convincing but surprising, un- 
expected, I wonder 

l$- acceptable, but unexplained in past, final, agreed upon, no longer 
susceptible to argument 

11.29. A pair of words classifies a fact or its opposite: 

ni for a fact 

xani- contrary to fact (see also 1 1.67, 1 1.85.) 

11.30. Young and Morgan in their treatment of such words some- 
times define them in connection with a particular aspect, tense, or 
mode. Examples do not always corroborate the limitations they 
define, possibly because they emphasize the temporal and omit or 
understress the evidential function of these elements (FS 6, 11, 16, 
18, 21,. 23, 31; YMG108). 

11.31. The syntactic elements are: 

-£' (>-^€* after stems with nasalized vowel ; -y$- after a stem with 
an open syllable) "was, dead, gone, the one previously referred to, 
the one known, indeed" : 

cddi-yQ- my deceased older sister 

'dko gah neistse'd-$- then the aforementioned cottontails he had killed 

ts4h-$- ni-tcxi-' the stones mentioned became very red (EW 102:17) 

t84h-$*-c%- surely it must have been a rock (BS) 

dadiltW-$- it caught fire indeed (EW 104: 12) 

natoh~$* tobacco (in his possession) (EW 104: 9) 

11.31a. -|" may assimilate to the preceding vowel: 

camtfh-4' my late mother 

xalah-d'-ni' his(4) late sister (WE) 

naxdidja^-4' put it into your mouths (EW 104: 10) 

t4a^-4 m yi*' yiyi'giz he cleaned out the basket (EW 104:25) 

t6h-$- (not toh-§') the aforementioned water (FS 30—1). 

This example is very interesting in that it suggests that to, the 
independent noun for " water" may be equivalent to td- the prefix 
form (5.43.). 

11.31b. Affixed to a future verb -$• means "wish, it will be indeed, 
may it be indeed, mind you it will, ought" : 

naxodo-ltyl-$- I hope it will rain 
ty-h dido-lx4-l-$- I wish he would kill a deer (FS 31) 
'£* mind you ! note this ! you may notice ! 
yaftado-gd-l-Q- he ought to enter (EW 190, n. 69) 
ya'dUh-$' may it be well, good ! (a common greeting) 

11.32. -|*ni' seems to be used interchangeably with -|'; it is per- 
haps a compound of two particles each meaning "past, gone, the 
one referred to" (cp. 5.32.): 

302 NAVAH O GRAMMAR 1 1 .32 .-1 1.36. 

xaty'S'tii' his(4) previously mentioned pet (turkey) (NT 28 : 13) 
xadjayi' 'dji' xol xo-lne'^ni* 'di\ it was the one who spoke to him(4) 

from (its place) in his(4) ear; in-his(4) -ear-direction with-him(4) 

things-were-reported it-was-a-person (NT 28 : 2) 
xol naxalnihe , ni > the one previously mentioned who cust. reported to 

him (NT 30:21) 
biJ66 ndd'a-ni' xeida the one sacrificed (whose scalp is secured) for the 

War Ceremony may be anyone; war-ceremony aforementioned who- 
ever -amongst 
td-cg- biH-l ta- bq-h Had *&-nV bq-h na-ldws luckily it (shade) had boughs 

on it almost falling off; luckily its-branches just on-it now-ob- 

viously off-it (they)-fall-down (NT 50: 10) 
ndMe-ctcq-Hye'rii'' Dirty Eyes aforementioned (WE) 
. bilaHiye-ni* her brothers that were, those who had been her brothers 


11.33. do'h'l, often shortened to do* it will be, it is decreed: The 
full form do'le-l is the regular third person future of the verb -le'l 
"happen, come to be, occur." It or the shortened form do* may be 
used with any of the continuatives or the static forms. The word is 
so free that examples need hardly be given. It is placed after the 
word or words to which it refers : 

Hdaxo-Va-h (inc.cess.) do- they will go to school, learn something 

biza-d binariictin (pres.) do-le-l I shall teach language (YM 209) 

bitty- ainzf- (stat.) do- as protection you will stand before them (NT 

xole-h (pres.) do- you will come into being (EW 100:25) 

11.34. ni for a fact, it's a fact. Young and Morgan note that a 
short high tone does not become long and falling before this element. 
They consider that it is preceded by Id "truly;" I have not found 
this to be invariable. The two words are so closely related in meaning 
that both may be used for emphasis, but ni may be used without Id 
which probably supplies the contradictory or surprise meaning 

Mad di- Iq de-yd ni now this one truly is going for a fact 
ni da'dc is it a fact ? 

11.35. ni' experienced by speaker in the past, possibly still exist- 
ent, as I recall, the deceased. Compare ni' and *M§*\ which means 
"used to be but is no longer" (cp. FS 23) : 

ciji'4 ni' ye- cil xo-lne' ni' my late father told me about it (FS 23) 
koxo-U-dd-' kohgo desdoi ni' at this time last year it was hot I recall 

(FS 23) 
sitsili tah 'ahbinigo kintahgo- dahdi-yd- ni' my younger brother had 

started to town in the morning as I recall it ; my-younger-brother 

still being-morning town-toward he-started-off (pf. cess.) I-recall 

(FS 24) 

11.36. nte\ Jit^ it used to be but is no longer, past, deceased. This 
word makes any preceding statement irrevocably past, as do-le'l 

1 1 .36.-1 1 .38a. SYNTAX 303 

makes it future. If used after a noun it means "gone, no longer 

^Aiotciit, UtJutJaiBoU." Like dolvl, it is very free (cp. 11.33.): 

M§-' td- do-dak not yet, it was to have. . . but has not yet come to pass 

ikfy-' id* do -dak unfortunately it did not happen 

xodiye-axi-l kdrligo nti-'e-" "I'm going to kill him(4) f " it will have been 

said; I-shall-kill-him(4) thus-being-said -past-fut. (NT 30:21) 
Hxo-c'a-h (inc.cess.) Mfy' I have learned something 

11.37. ye-' present and verifiable in the vicinity of speaker and 
listener, truly, very, appropriate, propitious, voluntarily (AB, FH, 
cp. FS29): 

'dltii-si- ye*' he is very small, he is certainly small (FS 29) 

ci ye-' 'ddicni I am really the one who says it (FS 29) 

J ei- ye-' ci Hey ! That's mine ! 

di- ye-' *a-dfy* this one is really from over there (NT 64: 3) 

do-da ye-* 'azl\-' it was really hopeless; no really something-became 

(FS 30) 
ho' ye-* it is really a fire, there is a fire (FH) 
kg- ye-* right here 
xdi ye-" who is it actually ? (FH) 
xa-'i y^ which one, let's see now . . . (YM 92) 
x&go* ye-' everything is ready; it's all right to start (FH) 
xdi-di ye-' *eih who will volunteer ? who will risk it ? 
hwi- ye*' here of his own accord (AB) 
Uad-e-' now is the proper time (FS 30, FH) 
da* ye-' xo-t\-d exactly what has happened ? (AB) 

11.38* y4' 9 y&h verifiable in the past, but no longer verifiable, 
though possibly still existent, aforementioned, past, deceased; with 
future, "wish." "y&h is a little stronger than y&ni* but there isn't 
much difference" (FH): 

xdi y$* who was it ? (FH) 

*p' yi' there was a fire (and something happened to it), there must have 
been a fire (cp. kg* nf$-' "there was no longer a fire, there had been 

xdhgoci* td- y$- xol xo-yd-go obviously he(4) was in great fear (EW 

do* y$* xactejdifie-hda he(4) surely did not rest (EW 116:2) 

xa-dzi' %-d4*" at the time he spoke (EW 100: 11) 

naxodo-Ui*l$* I certainly wish it would rain (YMG 108) 

bS-so ce- xodo-le-1%- 1 wish I would get money; money with-me things- 
will-happen- wish (YMG 108) 

de-sdoi nd-xodo-dU-l^- I wish it would get warm again ; it-has-started-to- 
be-warm again-things-will-become-wish (YMG 108) 

11.38a. 2/|* sometimes functions as a nominalizer; possibly it is 
past compared with -r, -i, and -igi* (5.23-5.30.) : 

dadiltlۤ- (crystal) that was lighted (EW 104 : 12) 

'azdezt'o y$- the place from which he shot arrow 

bi*c '6-'$* 'al'q be- xazdi-dza they(4) two were dressed in different kinds 

of flint; flint garments-to-be-sure different with-them(garments) 

they(4)-were-dressed (EW 108:16) 

304 navaho gramma* 11.38.-11.46. 

td' dzizMh$-gi at the very place where they two had sat 
m*£* biyi y xodi-atiq^ noise was heard within the earth; earth-obviously 
in-it there-were-sounds (EW 110:13) 

11.39. y&ni 9 , see -&nV 11.32. 

11.40. yi'la' . . . may. . ., but I hope not; . . . may not . . ., but 
I hope it will ; be sure to . . . , be sure not to ... : 

bida 'o*o*lni yi'la? whatever you may do, don't . . . 

tiidd fd-kd nd'oxodilzi-d yi-W don't waste time (NT 44 : 7) 

td-kd biUid&ya* yi'la* be sure to look for it under any circumstances 

(NT 26 : 3) 
td'kd yosi' xvla? (< yosi-h yi'la') be careful not to make a mistake 

(EW 108:4) 
If-' tdgo- di'lo-s ba- yo-ni xi-ld* (< yo-nih yi'la') don't forget to water the 

horse; horse to-water lead you-forget be-sure-not 

11.41. ga* verifiable at the present time, but not necessarily near 
the subject (AB); emphatic particle (FS 8): 

loot's- go* dini bifayahdi that's the way it is in the Navaho country (AB, 

cp. kot'e- ye-' "this is the way it is right here") 
m ga' to- xailUd-hgo this one (wife) cust. ground corn (NT 30:20) 
*ei go* '4i da-fy Id they surely those must be the ones (NT 224 : 7) 
td- go? 'a-ni- nixi'eywfr' yisdH-lte-h Id true it is obvious (that) our baby 

will be successfully raised; truly-it-is-evident our-baby is-caused-to- 

lie-safely truly (NT 39:20) 
fa- ga' 'a-ni- ta-ld'i ni-dlj Id it is obviously true that we are one (tribe) 

(NT 58 : 24) 

11.42. xani- contrary to fact, see 11.67, 11.85. 

11.43. xi-la? is probably the same as yrla\ its initial being affected 
by a preceding h (11.40.). 

11.44. djo therefore, consequently, as is known, djo is an untrans- 
latable introductory word that refers back to what has been said or 
thought (FS 14). 

11.45. tde'h in vain, try to . . , (and fail) (see also 11.83, 11.84): 

t66-h de-yd he is tired (gen.) ; in-vain he-started-to-go 

tSi-h 'dVi*nihic 'dti- it is impossible; in- vain is-it-done-thus it-is-thus 

tdi'tdi-yd'n watermelon; in-vain one-eats -something 

t66* xata di~z'i'* in-vain she looked among them 

t<$6*h nio (< ni-go) saying in vain 

t66' nffo-skan in vain she begged 

11.46. la y expresses consternation or astonishment, "unexplain- 
ably, I don't understand why, I can't see why. . . " : 

ci la' I truly (NT 224 : 16) 

'asdzfy la* sUf'' Id why ! she's a young lady ! (of a child one has not seen 
for years); young -woman I-am-astonished she-has-become to-be- 
sure (FS 18) 

1 1 .46.-1 1 ,48a. SYNTAX 305 

ce'6-' la' to- ba* ydihsin I don't know why I am ashamed of my clothes; 
my -clothes I-don't-know-why on-account-of-them I-am-embar- 
rassed (FS 18) 

t66-k la' ndi-c'a-h I don't see why I can't lift it; in-vain unexplainably 
I-am-lifting-round-obj. (FS 18) 

t66-h la' ba- nts&ske'S I don't know why I can't make up my mind; in- 
vain unexplainably I-am-thinking-it-over (FS 18) 

do- la' b4-xdzmda it is difficult to know (NT 38 : 10) 

11.46a. io m la 9 apparently, it looks so but probably isn't. This 
complex is sometimes used with naxalin "it resembles, looks like": 

di* hi to- la' 'altSi*si naxalin this shoe looks too small; this shoe appar- 
ently is-small it-resembles (FS 29) 

di- bi-so to* la' be'elya- naxalin this dollar looks like a counterfeit; this 
dollar apparently counterfeit it-resembles (FS 29) 

to- la' biyo de-sUa-z it seems a bit cold; apparently quite it-has -become- 
cold (FS 29) 

11.47. la-na* wish it would . . . (and it may), desire that . . . (cp. 
la-na* "desire" [noun]): 

'dko yinicyi la-na* I wish that were my name (FS 18) 

do* 'dko yinicye-dah la-na- I wish that were not my name (FS 18) 

di- dzil bq-hgo* cac nda-kai la-na- I wish bears lived on this mountain 

(FS 18) 
ko xone' la-na- nsin nt$*' I was hoping this would happen ; thus things- 
happen wish I-want past (YM 160) 
kwi-cf- na-dfy-' Uijdole-l la-na- here probably may corn be planted 

(NT 28:7) 
. . . ci-' la-na- I wish . . . were mine (FS 18) 
diniMe- ydcti' la-na- (pres.) I wish I could speak Navaho 
la' bind-xodjo-Vd-l la-na- some more (than others) want to learn it 

11.48. Id enters into many combinations to form idioms. Just as 
Za' expresses wonder about a situation or statement, Id expresses 
conviction, "it is . . ., I find it is . . ., I have discovered. . ., I am 
convinced it is . . .": 

ci Id tiiya mq'j- yi-ltsd ni I am convinced that it was a coyote I saw 

(whatever you may think it was) ; I to-be-sure only coyote I-saw for- 

a-fact (FS 23) 
ditcin cirii-lxf "I am hungry," says A. B replies, cido' Id "Why! I am 

too!" (FS 15) 
cikd naxadld Id I found the ceremony was being held for my benefit 

(FS 13) 
di- tsi 'iti Id this is a rock (I thought it was something else) (FS 15) 

11.48a. When Id follows a sentence, it may refer to the entire 
statement preceding : 

djd td- bi*x6zini Id I see now that it was easily solved, to be sure there is 
nothing to it ; as-I-now-see just what-is-known to-be-sure (FS 15) 

td- 'a-ni- cibe-so to* 'axayoi ndi td- do- bini-yeliMa Id actually I had plenty 
of money but there was nothing to spend it on; it-is-the-truth my- 
money was-plentiful but there-was-absolutely-no-cause to-be-sure 
(FS 15) 

$66 NAVASO GltAMMAB ll.49.-ll.53. 

11.49. ladq,*' if, in case, in the event that. . ., provided that. . . . 
Note particularly the position of this compound between the two 
clauses whose relation it points out : 

do- naxaltin Iddfr' 1 de-cd-l if it does not rain I will go (FS 16) 
naxaltin ladql-'' do- de'cd'lda if it rains I shall not go (FS 16) 
M-do'le'd bini-na* nittah ldd4'* do- y d*di de'cd'lda if I am detained by any- 
thing I shall not get there; anything because-of-it I-am-detained if 
not there-remote -at I-shall-go-negative (FS 16) 

11.50. lago was listed as a negative optative (8.81.), but there seem 
to be two of these words, apparently unrelated, or perhaps there is 
only one with two different meanings. One meaning is temporal, 
perhaps lago forms a temporal clause introduced in English by 

dibi td* da-ztsfr' lago biMniyd the sheep was dead before I found it 

(FS 16) 
tcidi kad$- y yitcxo*h lago naxdlni^ the car was almost falling to pieces 

before I bought it (FS 17) 
ly* td y yiskfygo dado'isa-l lago bVti-lid I branded the horse three days 

before it died; horse three days-being it-will-die before I-branded-it 

(FS 17) 
ne-znd yiskfygo ncfakai do-le-l logo xata*li birii'tsd ten days before the 

ceremony the singer got sick; ten days-being dance-at-night-chant 

it-will-be before singer got-sick (FS 16) 
kfr'dilye'-h logo it was usually planted I noticed (NT 338: 15) 
na-ki M6-* logo before that he had two wives; two (wives) having been 

before (NT 30:19) 

11*51. Id djini let's pretend, it is said to be: 

cac ni'dli-' la djini let's pretend (play) we are bears (FS 17) 
kin gone' si-ki Id djini let's pretend we are in the house; house inside 
we-two-sit truly it-is-said (FS 17) 

11.52. le' may ... be, would that it . . . , but who knows (FS 18) : 

'adinkU-n le* let there be light (YM(5 1 9) 

to dilxit Id* seTQ- le" I wish I had some whiskey : water dark some there- 

is-round-obj. would-that (Y1VLG 19) 
nikidcftUte^go yicdloc le* I wish it would rain as I trot along; raining 

I-trot-prog. may-it-be (YMG 108) 

11.53. leh, le customary. This word may be used after vario^ 
aspects; if the verb has the customary form nd-(nd), the customary 
idea is repeated, once in the verb form, once with leh (cp. U 11.54.) 

'e'e'd-hgodah y d-di le they customarily arrive there about sunset ; su ns« " 

being-about there-remote-at cust. (NT 312:4) 
'atte^dgo dibiydji dane'skah (stat.) leh in fall lambs are usually f 

(YM 141) 
tU^go tid'di nictfrh (inc.) leh I usually sleep outside; night-beingoir 

in-place I-lie-down (inc.) usually (YM 214) 
'dkold 'dzodjini* (pres.) leh that is the proper way for a person to si 

so truly one(4)-sayB-things-thu8 usually (EW 120: 11) 
sidd* (stat.) leh he cust. sits, stays (NT 266 . 1 1) 

11.53.-11.56. SYNTAX 307 

J dko yddahgo dasa'q)- (stat.) le- so on top it cust. rests (NT 404: 17) 

dvriile (pres.) we cust. say 

td- xa'dti'doh ya- na-yd-le'igi* (< nayah le) ndi to- ndd-gd-hdah ty* bil 

no-ltf-leh (< no-lfy-l leh) why does he keep going about to dances 

and galloping on horseback ? 

11.54. U f le is hardly to be differentiated from leh "customarily" 

td* fidaxa-ztq) U (DD) (U FH) they just stayed home; merely they-cust.- 

stay cust. 
td- s6dd li I just stay home; merely I-sit cust. (DD) 
kadaxidikd-hdc U (or leh) those who are cust. ill; those-who-start-rep.- 

going-ill-interrogative cust. (FH) 

11.55-11.86. Negative 

11.55. Several words express the negative, do'dah is a quite 
emphatic "no, never;" ndah is a non-emphatic, contradictory 
answer or remark. For instance, in answer to the statement, dv 
belasd'na bitse* 9 xol&nigv "this is a pear," one might say, ndah 
belasd'na "no, it is an apple." There are various modifications of 
these negatives, made by combinations of elements which have 
already been discussed : 

do-dahih (do-ddi) be 1 do-dah never, absolutely never 

tah do-dah not yet ; still not 

to- do-dah alas! no! (referring to a decision suddenly changed). td* here 

means reversal of a plan or conclusion. 
ndi do-dah but no ! 

11.56. In the discussion of the negative many examples will be 
given, because negative elements give rise to many idioms. 

The simplest negative statement is made by dc ... -dah, a 
negative frame. The positive statement as usually made is included 
between the two parts; do- starts the negative expression (sometimes 
being sufficient), -dah completes it : 

do- ci~dah it isn't I 

do- cVi-dah it isn't mine 

do- 7 dkwe J 6-dah it isn't so, it's wrong 

do* *dkwi--dah it is not exactly so, not absolutely correct 

do- bihi-dah it does not belong to anyone (cp. do- bVi-ddh "it isn't his) 

do- 'M-dah not that one, it's the wrong one 

The following attributes are found primarily in the negative : 

do- 'ahsoxodi-'fr-dah conditions are unbearable, hopeless (EW 106:18) 

do* 'dtdhi-dah it is as one might expect, harmless, without fault 

do- 'oc unsheltered, uncared for, less evident than a shadow 

do- 01 yd*dti*-dah . . . does not like it (cp. 01 ytfdti " . . . likes it") 

do- yd J dcz$--dah it is emphatically not all right; it is awful (WE) 

do* 01 x$$--dah is angry (cp. do* do- 01 x$j$*-dah "... is not angry") 

do- bi-'q-'dah it is dying out 

do- bi-yq*-dah he is becoming sad 

21 Reichard 

308 NAVAHO GftAMMAH 11.56.-11.58. 

do- bi-tcj'-dah he is becoming weak 

do- bi-tcxy-dah he is becoming very weak, his life hangs by a thread 

do- biyah-dah, do* bi-yah it is not enough, it doesn't fit 

do- de*ni--dah it is dull, blunt (equivalent to bikq- yija*j "its edge is 

wearing away" (cp. de-ni "it is sharp") 
do* tcoxd^p-dah it is inevitable, things are beyond help, hopeless 
do- bixoni-dzq- -dah it is impossible (FS 14) 
do* tSi-dah he is very weak 

do- tii-d ^6£ki ''aii it is not normal, it is intolerable (WE) 
do- tsi-d 'dti'-dah it is not to be scorned, ignored; not normal it-is-thus 
do- tiidd bidzi'l-dah he is very weak indeed ; not absolutely his-strength 

(weaker than do- tiidah) (FH) 
do- 'dkoxo-te--dah things are abnormal 
do- la* lahgo y dt&--dah they are the same; not one otherwise it-is-thus 


-dah is sometimes omitted, in which ease one has to judge by 
context whether do- is negative or future (11.33.): 

do-H-ydc, do'i-ya-c-dah, do-Hlydc-d-ah vigil, ceremonial period of 
sleeplessness ; there-is-no-sleeping 

11.57. The examples already given differ little from those which 
follow except that some cannot be analyzed. The following illustrate 
simple negative expressions : 

do* H-nisin-dah I do not want; I-do-not-want-something 

do* td* 'ddzdi-dah it is not unimportant, not to be treated lightly, not to 
be ignored; it-is-not-that-which-has-just-happened-thus 

do- naxasti-n xodo-le-l-dah no one can be your husband 

do- nikq? xodo-le-l-dah you will never have a husband; not your- 
husband things-will-be 

do- naxoniti* -dah there was no way to get down; no-place-strung-out- 

do- na-ydhi-dah there is no one at home; there-is-no-one-going-about 

do- nsin-dah I want nothing; I-do-not-want 

do- nsmi-dah I don't want anything; there-is-not-that-which-I-want 

do- xayoi'd&h he is not very capable, he has little power 

do- xadd-hdji' ydda-ti'-dah they dared not speak; not-toward-in-front- 
of-him(4) they-speak 

do' ci di-nify-dah you are not my concern, I am not concerned about 
you; not I you -are-bothered (YM 199) 

do- xaltcini-dah undefined natural smell; that-which-does-not-give-off- 

do- xotf--dah things are invisible; it is dark; things-are-not-seen 

11.58. The position of words or elements before or within the 
negative frame seems to make little difference in meaning : 

do- cind-l-dah y dni, or do- cind-l *dni--dah he doesn't speak that way in 

front of me (FH) 
tah do- kintaho- dicd-h-dah, or kintaho- tah do- dicd-h-dah, or do- kintaho- 

tah dicd-h-dah I have never been to town (FH) 
ciicidi do* di*ti$-h-dah or do- citcidi di-tSf-h-dah my car won't start; my- 

car does-not-make-a-sound (FH, YM 222) 
ci do* 'dcfp-dah or do* ci Hcffdah I didn't do it (FH) 

11.58.-11.64. SYNTAX 309 

Occasionally, however, one form will do and the other will not, 
showing that they are not absolute alternants: 

ci-h yillca-z do- siJSi diyd-h-dah, but not do- ci-h yillca-z ciUi diyd-h-dah 
I never get a cold, I do not have a cold; into-me cold-has-been- 
moving it-does-not-start-to-move over-me (FH) (Ad 1/49:8) 

11.59. With the fourth person subject do'...-dah expresses a 
negative command of general import, or politely refers to the second 
person (cp. 8.75-8.76.): 

do- 'ddjini--dah one should never speak thus; don't ever speak that way 

do* 'ddjitp-dah one should never do that, don't ever do it 

do- djUca-dah one should never cry, don't cry 

do- djitcxa-dah one should never scream, never scream 

11.60. The negative frame do* ... J dfe*-dah with an optative verb 
form designates "cannot, be unable to . . .," literally, "may ... be 
it-is-not-thus" : 

do* doca? '&£$*-dah I cannot go; not may-I-go it-is-thus (YMG 107) 

do- 'o-cxd-c 'ate'-dah I cannot go to sleep; not may-I-go-to-sleep it-is- 
thus (YMG 107) 

do* bindtsd-' dosd-l *dte--dah no one can pass him unseen: not cust.- 
away-from-him may-he-sail it-is-thus (EW 112 :20) 

tcidi do* do*8ti<y i dti--dah I cannot get the car started; car not may-I- 
cause-to-sound it-is-thus (YM 222) 

11.61. The negative may have a nominalized form with -i "don't 
be the one who . . .": 

do* nsin-i-dah I want nothing; not I-am-the-one-who-wants (YMG 18) 
do* na-ydh-i-dah no one is at home; not one-who-goes-about 
do- danitin-i-dah don't look; not one-who-looks (WE) 
do- xalnyyi-dah undefined taste (as cabbage) : not that-which-is-tasted 
do- xaltcin-i-dah undefined smell; not that-which-gives-off-odor 
do- Id x&ni-td-j-i-dan (-dan < -dah-ni for a fact) now you mention it we 
two have not come for anything (EW 106 : 13) 

11.62. A double negative do* do* ...-dah is equivalent to a 
positive : 

do* do* bil x$j$--dah he is not angry (cp. do* bil x$j§--dah "he is angry; 

with -him there-is-no-satisfaction" (AB) 
do* do* 'dsoxodictyhda do- I shall not be discouraged; not not-I-am- 

without-hope it-will-be 

11.63. do' fa* ttad. . . -dah means "don't want to. . . " : 

do* td- Mad aild-go adly'-dah I don't want to be a soldier; not really now 

being-a-soldier I-become-negative (FS 6) 
do- fd- Uad 'dk$- nsiyd-dah I don't want to go there; not really now 

there-remote I -have-travelled-about-negative (FH 6) 
do- td- Uad na* nVfy-dah I don't want to give you a round object; not 

really now to-you I-have-moved-round-obj. -negative (FS 6) 

11.64. Three negative frames, do- ndo' . . .-dah, do- ndi . . .-dah, 
and do- n&tf ndi . . . -dah are considered by Young and Morgan to be 


310 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 11.64.-11.66. 

exactly the "same." FH finds no difference in meaning between any 
of the three, or do* ... -dah or do* dado* . . . -dah. Those whose 
introductory elements are extended seem to be more emphatic than 
do* . . . -dah : 

do- ndo" da-tsa-h no-lin-dah he doesn't even look sick (FS 5) 

'awi- y do- ndo' yidlo-h-dah or do* ndi yidlo-h-dah the baby is not even 

cold (much less uncomfortable) (FS 5) 
do- 'adlQ-dahdd- do- 'asdzdni ya- yinfy-dah do- ndd J ndi nd-'dfoh-dah he 

does not drink, he doesn't bother with women, he doesn't even 

smoke (FS 5) 

11.65. Very little difference in meaning is detectable between the 
frames do* . . . -dah and do* ... -go* unless it be that do* . . . go* refers 
to a future idea: 

do- ciyd-j-g6- 'dni he isn't my son, he is not my son even though he says 

so (I will not acknowledge him as my son) (NT 52 : 15) 
do- tizct-d-go- not far forward (YM 15) 
*ei do- tcgxo-'i'-go- or 'et do- tcgxo-'p-dah they were very mean, powerful 

do* ya- nda-kdi-go- when they have nothing to do in the future (NT 

do* bitty ni--gd- he couldn't talk to them (NT 40:2) 
do- bitSq- xasti'-go respect him by avoidance in the future, be careful 

about him (FH) 
do- y dk6xo-U--g6- or do- 'dkoxo-fi-~dah never before had the place been 

this way, the place is not the same (FH) 
do- bikd-'-go- nike- dincrii I really hate you (EW 94 : 7, FH) 
do- 'i-yq^ -go- (or do- ^i-yd^-dd^) do- dahdide-cd-l-dah I shall not start < 

before (unless, until) I have eaten (YMG 17, FH) 
'& kiyah do- bikd-' *antfd--go- bini-na- or y 4i kiyah do- bikd-' *anit$--da 

bini-na- because things do not mature on that land (FS 10, FHj 
do- ce- nikixoniltq- -go- -c\- ta- kwe*4 na-cd-go ce- xodi-na* do-le-l nf> 

probably if it had not started to rain on me I would have stay 

longer; not with-me rain-fell -probably just here I-going-abc 

with-me time-passes it-will-be it-has-been (YMG 17) 
do- ye- naxa'tido-* d-l-go- or do- ye- naxa'tido^d-l-dah it will be a preto 

for him (EW 108 : 4) ; he is not going to permit you (FH) 
'ai ye- 1 dini do- da-tdi-d-go- ki-xa&\ those evil people live there (N 


11.66. The frame do* y&* . . ,-i seems to indicate a threat, 
lucky that, it is a good thing that. . . not ..." (possibly yd* n 

do- yd- ni-Usdn-i it's a good thing that I did not see you, you are ■ 

I did not see you (cp. ni' tdoxami td- do- niltsQ-'dah which h* 

same meaning (FH]) 
do- yi* cind-l 'ddinin-i it is a good thing you did not say that i 

presence, you better not let me hear you say that (FS 7); I v 

had been there when you said that (FH) 
do- yi- ca- ydnilti'go ndis6ti$-i it is a good thing I did not heo 

talking about me; not about-me when-you-were-talking I-di< 

hear-you (FS 6) 

11.66.-11.72. SYNTAX 311 

ca- nanfy djini do- yi' y i*d4^ 'dkwe'i na-cdh-i I hear you were talking 
about me, it is a good thing I was not there at the time; about-me 
you-were-bothering they-say not at-the- time-remote I-am-going- 
about (FS 7) 

11.67. The frame do* xanv . . .-dah may express a condition con- 
trary to fact (cp. 11.85.) : 

d<>- .rani- kdfi-go 'dnile-h-dah why not make it this way (YM 95) 
d<r xanv ni* "aM6\ nty 1 bitti dah'inrl-dah why don't you saddle your 
horse too (YM 95) 

11. US. do'cq? . . . Id see to it that . . ., make sure that . . ., take 
care 1 liat . . . , be determined that . . . not : 

do-cq? gah td*gi'd ndcdd'h Id I am determined not to return without a 

do'cq* 'dko nd-ndcrlfrh Id I am determined not to do that again (FS 6) 
docq' ni-lxac Id I'll see that it does not bite you (FS 6) 

11.69. The frame do*cq? UV . . . Id is similar to do'cq? . . . Id: 

do-cq* l&i' 'awd'lya yah'anind'h Id I am determined that you shall not 

go to jail (FS 6) 
do'cq? lei' t&* do- 'awd-lya yatianind-h Id 1*11 see to it that you go to jail 

(FS 6) 
do-cq? Hi* 'acki' to bi-lxfr Id I'll see to it that the boy does not drown 

(FS 6) 

11.70. An emphatic negative frame with the significance of a 
positive is do'lddo' . . . -dah "it certainly is, is it not ! My! But it is!" : 

do'lddo* 'ayoi* '&€$• 'dt&'-dah it is a terrible thing, it is shocking 
do-lddo' 'ayoi Hnti'-da Id &amd you're a fine one surely (to be) my 

mother (NT 116:4) 
do*ldd6' tsitia H'ld'-dah it is certainly destructive, it is a wrong that 

destroys (WE) 
do-lddo 9 ydwi' 'dnti*-dah Iq xaati-n you are a man despicable beyond 

words (WE) 
dodddo* to* nixada^i-dah you are certainly unspeakably dirty (WE) 
do-lado* nda'Z-dah Id it certainly is heavy (FS 5) 
do-lddo* de'sMa-z-dah Id it certainly is cold (FS 5) 
do-lddo* njon-dah it (mask) certainly is beautiful (NT 236:28) 
do-lddo 1 be4ti*-dah there is nothing like it (coyote call) (NT 212 :7) 

11.71. The frame do* ... le 9 *dtfcqo % means "proof against, with- 

do- xa'&tvdah ymikdo*ya > W 'dte-go* bidzi-lgo tsin ne-lkd-lgo 'dyvla- he 
made the stockade so strong that nothing could get through 

citiba-l do- to* binikdo-ge-h W 'dfi-go- 'i'cla* I made my tent waterproof, 
so strong water could not leak through it (FS 19) 

11.72* The negative frame fa* do m . . ,-i seems to be an emphatic 
form of do* ... -{. It is often a negative command and sometimes 
seems to mean "absolutely don't be the one who . . .," "not even 
...." "don't even ...": 

312 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.72.-11.75. 

td- do* baxatd-d-i it is not hidden* misleading; absolutely it-is-not-the- 

one-that-is-deceptive-about-things (AB) 
td- do- xili-djfh-i it was not absolutely dark, before night came (WE) 
td- do- 'ddinin-i don't say that; don't be-the-one-who-speaks-thus 

td* do* 'dcidinin-i don't say that to me 
td' do* cidit^h-i don't eat me out of house and home; don't be-the-one- 

who-gnaws-me (AB) 
td- do* cit6$'h sinizin-i don't stand in my way; absolutely not obstruct- 

ing-me-the-one-who-stands (YMG 55) 
td- do- xafte'Vf-i she(4) did not look out; absolutely not she(4)-is-the- 

td- do- ce- nanin6h4 don't hurt me; don't make me cry, don't teaseme; 

absolutely not with-me the -one -who -teases (YM 153) 
td- do- kg ^6d\-h-i the fire had not even gone out; not even firewas-the- 

td- do* naxirldn-i ainizf stand still; absolutely not you-are-the-one- 

who-moves-about you-are-standing (YMG 55) 

11.73. The frame fd' do* ... -i is also used in complex sentences to 
indicate a temporal clause "before . . . " : 

td- do- ndddh-i before he comes back, . . . (YMG 48) 

td* do* dasi-ltsihd ni-'oh yicyod before they saw me I ran out of sight; 

they-do-not-see-me out-of-sight I-ran (YM 159) 
'ei td* do* bi- yic&hi Uidotolgo 'dtp Id that (cord) even before I step into it 
(basket) will surely break; that I-do-not-step-into-it it -will-break- 
being it-is-thus (EW 120:4) 

11.74. In the following the negative frame is td' do* . . .i-dah: 

td* do- be- doca'-i-dah I have no means by which to go; absolutely not 

by -moans -of- it that-which-I-may-go (YMG 107) 
td- do- be- xodoteli-i-dah no transportation is ^available ; absolutely not 

that-by-means-of-which-there-should-be-travelling (YM 199) 
td- do- yi-ltsdn-i-dah I saw no one (cp. td- do- yi-ltsdni ... "I didn't get 

to see . . . ," and td- do- yi-tsfy-dah "I didnot get to see" used without 

another clause [FH]) 
td- do- na- xalSid-i-gi-dah things are not at all right where you (coyote) 

are; not on-account-of-you things-are-proper-at (NT 208:27) 
td- do- nixidi-lnin-dah do* (-nin < n%-%-) absolutely nothing will affect 

us (EW 80:14) 
tiida td- do- be- box6n£*dzdti-dah (-dzdn < -dzq-i) really there is no way 

to get at it; absolutely not it-is-possible (EW 112: 25) 
tiida td- do- bidi-stic£ -i-dah actually he could not be heard (EW 96: 12) 
td* y a-ni cibiso td- 'axaydi ndi td- do* bini-yih-e'-dah Id actually I had 

plenty of money but I found it useless (because there was no place 

to spend it) (FS 15) 

11.75. The following examples have the negative frame td' do- 
. . .-i-go: 

td- do- ntca*-i-go teiyd '&k$* nil de-c'ac I'll take you only on condition 

that you do not cry (FS 26) 
td- do- xdi-dah bil xolne'-i-go teiyd di- If*' na- de-M-l I'll give you this 

horse only on condition that you don't tell anyone (FS 26) 

11.76.-11.80. SYNTAX 313 

11.76. In the following the frame is id' do' ... -i-go* : 

tiidd td' do- bita'-i-go- kote-go xoc yiVd a patch of cactus so thick there 
was absolutely no space between them; absolutely not-between- 
them being-thus cactus was-a-mass (NT 32:4) 

td- do- djoyqV -i-go- it was nothing one would want to eat (NT 48 : 17) 

11.77. The negative id' do- . . .-dah seems to be more emphatic 
than do* ... -dah, less emphatic than id' do* ... -i\ 

td- do* bino'lnin-dah nothing can be compared with it (WE) 

*ei ttad td- do- 'dUhi-dah do-le-l these effects must not be lasting; these 

now harmless must be (EW 80 : 2) 
td- do- xodvna'-dah it was not very long; absolutely not time-had- 

passed (cp. ta- do* xodi-na'-i "it was not even long") 
tah td- do- tsike-dah it is not yet suitable, satisfactory, convenient; still 

absolutely not suitable 
td- do- yd y dte-dah it wasn't right 
td- do- H'Ua'-dah I did not go to school 
td- do- 'odi'h 'ddzcb'-dah not decreasing; absolutely not it-disappeared 

it-became (EW 104:15, cp. ne-lte' do- '6-d{h Hdza--dah "the amount 

did not become less" [EW 104:24]) 
td- do- yili-djv-dah it was not quite dark (FH) (cp. do- xUi-dji--dah 

"before night came . . . , before it was absolutely dark") 
id* do- dinosin-da you two keep nothing holy (NT 120:26) 
td- do* be- tci'ni'in-da, you are no use to anyone (NT 16 : 8) 
td- do- xaki de-yd'-da he (turkey) never gave up looking for him(4) 

(NT 26:24) 
td' do- yi'tsfy-dah I did not get to see it (FH) 

11.78. id' do- ndo' . . . -i seems to be a very emphatic negative: 

id- do- ndd y konizah-i it was no time at all 

11.79. The frames td' do' . . .-g& and fa' do* . . .-gfrgo seem to 
mean "unless": 

td- do- naxo-Ufy- -go-go cina-dd-' 'altso dado'gd-l unless it rains my corn 

will all dry up (FS 26) 
td- do- Iq'i yidza-z-go-go dq-go toil do- ndaxodo-dle-ldah unless it has 

snowed a lot the plants will not come up in spring (FS 26) 
id- do- 'axe-' *dr$-go- diniyd- -go-go djei 'adj-h yeigo ndirid-lxfrl unless you 

go to the hospital your tuberculosis will become really serious 

(FS 26) 

11.80. The combination of particles id' and kd seems sometimes to 
mean "carefully, carelessly," but with a negative it means "don't." 
The translation "be careful that . . . , be careful how ..." is probably 
justified in some cases, if there is no other negativizing particle: 

td-kd bainohtin-%- la* {Id FH) don't bother him, be careful not to 

bother him (EW 108:13) 
td-kd cil yaKo-lye-d whatever happens don't let him come in to my 

td-kd la y cil yah'odye-d don't let anyone come in to my house (as when 

ceremony is in progress) (FH) 
td-kd bil t66-'d-l be careful not to divulge your purpose to him (EW 


314 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.80-11.85. 

td-kd x&O'dzi-h see that you do not speak (in church) (FS 28) 

td-kd lahgo 'dfi-go cit6^ xaohdzih be careful not to ask anything extra* 

ordinary of me (EW 104: 19) 
fd-kd sitd&h (< citdq*h) sinizini- Id don't stand in my way (FH) 
td-kd 'ddinini' Id don't mention anything, don't talk, don't make any 

noise (FH) 
fd-kd cidit^hi- Id don't eat me out of house and home (FH) 
td-kd >6-y4 don't eat (NT 30 : 23) 
fd-kd bikid6-ya y yi-la' be sure to look for it (NT 26 : 3) 
tiidd td-kd na'oxodilzi-d yi-la? don't waste time (NT 44: 7) 

11.81. The following examples have td'lcd with a negative: 

td-kdhi dini do- daohdl$--dah none of you believed this man (even 
though he was right) (NT 168:19, FH) (cp. td* xani- dini do- 
daohdlfydah "you did not believe the man but he was right," and 
td* xani- dini daohdlq, "you believed the man but you should not 
have [FH]) 

td-kd yosi- xi-W be careful not to make a mistake; careful you-make-a- 
mistake you-may-but-we-hope-not (EW 108:4) 

td-kd-c ya* dido-lxil-dah should there be destruction (obscurity) because 
he would not keep quiet (FH) 

11.81a. fd-cf- do' ... -i what is more . . . not : 

td-cf- do- y6j$ yita-l-i what is more it was not properly chewed 

11.82. A free particle, tdfrh, tie* may stand before a statement, 
causing it to mean " . . . in vain, try to . . . and fail" (see also 1 1.45.) : 

tii* diyd I am tired (gen.) ; in -vain I-started-to-go 
t66- bidjini- -goh futilely she(4) said to him . . . 
166* xata de-z'f in vain she looked among them 

11*83. tit "in vain" before a negative statement means "try not 
to ...": 

t66 m do' ba' nd^dxojdiUi'' -gd' he tried (in vain) to be unconcerned about 
it. This sentence has three negatives: t6i- "in vain," do- ...-go* 
"not," and the prefix combination *d-xo-di- "pretend;" it means 
then "in- vain not on-account-of-him he(4) -pre tended- to-see." 

td* tii- do- H*znizin-go* he tried to resist: just-in-vain he(4)-did-not- 

11.84. If t66* stands within the negative frame it means "not in 
vain," therefore, "succeed in . . .": 

^ako xa-% Id do- tii* ntsiznike-z-dah exactly how he(4) tried to think 
do* t6i* 'axo'to-Vj-'dah not in vain was something being done to him(4) 
xa-H Id do* tii- yikd 'd-ti-dah how her treatment of him might be 

11.85. xani' means "contrary to fact": 

ni xani* not you (said to someone trying to crowd in) (FS 13) 

ci xani- tiiyd belagd-na biza-d cil bi-xozin I am not the only one who 

understands English; I-am contrary -to-fact it-is-only white-man 

his-language I -understand (YM 95) 

11.85.-11.88. syntax 315 

c$*' xani* 'aVq, dme'6 da-nlinigi* xani- J afd bitei-' bq- y adaz y ah leh they 
think that all Indians wear feathers in their hair; recall -that 
contrary-to-fact different tribes those-which-are contrary-to-fact 
feathers their-hair extraneous-to-it they-stand-up cust. (DD) 

di- dji xani* naxodo-Uf-l 'ity (or xwi-ndzm) nty* it looked as if it would 
rain today (but it didn't) 

fd- xani- ^ddidjV Hty nf$-* it seemed to be the end (but it wasn't) 
(FS 13) 

fa- xani- dini do- daokdlfydah you did not believe the man, but he was 
right (FH) 

fa- xani- dini daohdld you believed the man but you should not have 

tiidd ho xani- nvdz\- y I thought this would be a good place (but it 
wasn't) (NT 234:22) 

fa- xani- 'a-ni nsin I thought it was just the opposite of what it was (as 
I thought tire was flat but it wasn't) (WM) 

11.86. Idgo is a negative wish used with the optative, "may it 
not . . . , I hope it will not . . . , it is desirable that . . . might not 
. . . ;" it follows the verbal statement. It contrasts with la-ntr "it is 
desirable, I hope it will . . . " : 

ydy4*' Idgo don't eat it (YMG 54) 
'o-cxa-c Idgo I hope I won't go to sleep (YMG 107) 
yikQ-go naxoltq-' Idgo I hope it will not rain tomorrow (YMG 107) 
be- bil xo-lne 1 logo don't tell him (YMG 54) 
be- ndo-ne' logo don't hurt him (YMG 54) 
biUi dd'lta-l Idgo don't step on it (YMG 54) 
ciyolxi-l Idgo I hope I won't be killed (YMG 53) 

tcidi fd- 'dkwe'i nti'd-l Idgo don't park there; car just-there do-not-move- 
round-obj.-to-end (YMG 107) 

11.87-11.100. Interkogatives 

11.87. Since almost every interrogative idea is expressed more 
than once, it is difficult to assign an independent meaning to each 
element. Prefixed bound forms may be thought of as interrogative 
pronouns. They have the pattern of similar demonstrative elements- 
oca- "what" (general), xa-- "what near you," oca- "what remote"- 
they enter into combination with the same elements in the same 
way, and they are used to form questions, as well as interrogative 
pronominal compounds, such as "whatever, whoever, wherever, 
however," and the like. 

11.88. Besides, there are enclitics which have interrogative or in- 
terrogative pronominal significance; and there are also a few in- 
terrogative prefixes or introductory elements. These have been in- 
cluded with other bound forms (7.11-7.103.); here some examples 
will be given to illustrate their syntactic functions, and to show how 
they combine with various other elements. The more simple con- 
structions are given first, later, the more complicated complexes 
that take on idiomatic meanings are discussed (11.101-11.118.). 

316 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 11.89.-11.90- 

11.89. -cq\ sometimes abbreviated to -c, is suffixed to short 
forms. If the form is a noun plus -cqt J or -c, the suffix means "where 
is ... ?" -c abbreviated from -cql should not be confused with -ic 
which may also be shortened to -c, but affects the preceding high 
vowel by lengthening it, or the preceding low vowel by raising the 
tone. Moreover, da* which may form a frame with -ic or -c is not 
used with -cq\ or -c, its short form (cp. 7.93, FS 14, 24.): 

nin^-cq' where is your mother ? (cp. nimq-c [< nvmd4c\ "is it your 

mother ?") 
djan-cq > where is John ? (cp. djan-ic "is it John ?") 
dini-cq* where is the man ? 

11.89a. -cq J like most interrogatives, is often used in combination 
with other interrogative elements : 

dikwi'-cq* or dokwv-cq* nindxai how old are you ? how many-is-it 

winters-have-passed-you ? 
dini-cq* xa- yolyi what is that man near you called ? the-man-question 

what-near -you he-is -called (YM 92) 
tileidi-cq* xw xa£\ what is going on over there ? over-there-at-question 

what -near -you things-are-being-done (YM 161) 
xaH-cq' whatever it is (NT 30: 12) 
xada-cq' de-cni-l I wonder what will happen to me; what -of- various - 

possibilities-question I-shall-become (YM 161) 
di'-cq' xdidi bih whose is this ? to whom does this belong ? (cp. dvdic 

xdi Hh meaning and usage exactly the same FH) 
di'-cq* xdi (xdidi) bity' whose horse is this ? this-question who-remote 

his-horse (YM 94) 
xdidi-cq* or xdidic which one ? (YM 94) 
xdidi-cq* niiizin which one do you want ? (YM 94) 
xdi-cq' 'dnti who are you ? (YM 94, 160) 
xai-cq' ninuj, who is your mother (NT 52 : 7) 
xdida*cq' which of those possible ? 
xd*di-cq* rWijtcf (< nVadijtci) where were you born ? what-remote- 

place-at-question your-birth 
axx--cq y Hf6 'atsd 'i- de-tj-' how about guessing first ? (NT 66 : 23) 
xd-djV-c ninisbfrs how far is it to where I park ? where-to-a-point- 

question I-cause-rolling-to-the-end (FH) 
xd-dfr'-c from where ? where-from-question (cp. xd-d^ "where did he 

come from ?" There is no detectable difference in meaning, one 

interrogative may suffice [FH]) 

11.90. -ic, -c is an interrogative enclitic attached to the first word 
of an utterance. It differs from -c, the short form of -ccf in its 
phonetic effects. The high tone of the vowel of -ic combines with a 
final vowel of the form to which it is added. If that tone is low, the 
resulting vowel is rising ; if that tone is short and high, the vowel is 
lengthened ; if the tone is high and long, the vowel may absorb -i- 
and remains the same. 

When the vowel of the word to which -ic is suffixed can absorb its 
vowel, there is no way to differentiate the two— both have the same 
function. Probably these interrogatives are doublets, each having 
come into the language by a different route : 

1.90.-11.91. SYNTAX 317 

di-c (< di*4c) this one ? 

dUcin-ic Mi are you hungry ? (This is a translation from English. 
ditcm~ic ni-lx6- "is hunger killing you ?" is a more classical Navaho 

diniiaoh-ic yinilyi is your name dinitaoh ? 

'adq t d4 t ' i -dc do- Icinldnigo* niniyd-dah didn't you go to Flagstaff yester- 
day ? yesterday-question not to-Flagstaff you-went-negative 

dd-c nil yd' ati'dah don't you like it ? 

nic (< ni-ic) na-be-ho rilf are you a Navaho ? (FH) 

ndd-c (<! nda-ic) it is, isn't it ? (FH) 

dini-c (< dini-ic) nlf are you the man? (wp.dmi-cq? "where is the man?") 

ta*c 'a-ni really ? really-question it-is-true 

kintahgo-c (< -go- 4c) cil dd'd-c are you going to town with me ? town- 
to-question with-me you-two-are-starting-to-go (cp. 7.33.) 

cih-ic ci dane-Vq, can they measure up to me ? I-is-it I they-measure- 
up-to (WE) 

na-kai biza-d-ic nil bi-xozin do you know Spanish ? Mexican its-word- 
question you-know 

ibndHlto'C (-to-c < -to-ic) do you want to smoke again ? 

be-xonain-ic do you know him ? 

tSidih-ic td* do- xdxodiyinigidah is that not a special place where holy 
things are performed ? specifically-question is-it-not-a-holy-place-at 

taina-bq-s-ic yolyi tcidi go? yolyi is a wagon called an automobile ? 
wagon-question it-is-called auto actually is called (HM) 

to-c xglg or da' to-c x6l$ (to-c < to-ic) is there any water ? 

to-go-c (< td-go-'ic) diniyd are you going to the well (spring, water 
supply) ? 

be- ninVi-Hc or bS-c ninl'i'* did you steal it from him? with-him you 
stole-it-question, or with-him-question you-stole-it (YMG 17) 

11.90a. It has been said that the interrogative enclitic -ic may 
erve as the test of the word (4.35.). Examples show that (a* "ab- 
olutely, just," da' interrogative, do- "not," are words: 

ni da'dc is it a fact ? 

dd-c bini-yi nannd--da why don't you find out? not-interrogative 

because-of-it you-are-going-about (NT 110:2) 
dd-c nil yd'dte-dah don't you like it ? 
td-c k6U is this right ? should it be this way ? absolutely-question so- 

td-c "akoti is that right ? absolutely-question something-so-it-4s 
td-c 'dkoti was that right ? absolutely-question thus-so-it-is 

11.91. da 9 may be used with -ic to form an interrogative frame — 
he pattern is like that of do* ... -dah negative, the first element 
►eing independent, the second an enclitic, da' may introduce a 
juestion and may be used without the enclitic. It is often the first 
lement of an utterance, but may stand before the second word, 
vrobably for emphasis : 

da' 'dko bini' niyd-j do you accept me as a son ? is it thus let-it-be your- 

son(NT 66:20) 
da? di- is it this one ? 
aV td-c is it really . . . ? (NT 56 : 20) 
da' ni-c is it you ? (same as nl-c "is it you ?") (NT 168 : 14) 

318 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 11.91.-11.94. 

da? Uci^ de-z*di-c de*cd-l nzin does Red Point think I am going ? 

question Red-Point-question I-shall-go he-thinks 
da? ltd-' de'z'avc do'gd-l ninzin do you think Red Point wants to go ? 

question Red-Point-question he-will-go do-you-think 
da? dirU Mi or da? dind-c nl{ are you a man ? (FH) 
da' tco'i is this useful, good for anything ? (FH) 
da? ddinitia? -ic do you hear me ? question you-hear-me-question 
da? yiekfrgd'C sitidd do- will you be home tomorrow ? question tomorrow- 
question you-sit it-will-be 
da? titt how are you ? query you-are-it (FH) 
da? itt\ what are you doing ? query you-are-doing-it (FH) 
da? to x6l§ or da? to*c x$l$ is there any water ? (cp. to-c x$l$ with the 

same meaning) 
da? do'tie'S Mf what clan do you belong to ? question clan you-are (you- 

belong-to) (FH) 
ni da?dc is that a fact ? for-a-fact question-question 

11.92. The frame do* . . . -ic U is an indirect question of uncertainty, 
wonder, apparent probability; "see if it is, maybe it is, will be" : 

nariijo'jigd- dd'diniyd-c li could it be you are going to Gallup ? do you 

happen to be going to Gallup ? (FS 7) 
nda-z do'ic li could it be heavy ? I wonder if it is heavy (FS 7) 
biso do' ne* 'ddin-ic li could it be you are out of money ? you aren't 

broke are you ? (FS 7) 
ciMi doHc li you could be one of my relatives (FS 7) 
tio-do' dinVy ttos do'oc li look outside and see if it is cloudy (Ad 12/48 : 5) 

11.93. Several particles will be discussed before some of the more 
complicated, specialized interrogative forms are exemplified. They 
have a meaning of indirect reference, of doubt, "whatever, who- 
ever, whenever," instead of asking a direct question. They are 
combined in the same way as the interrogatives just illustrated. 

da* exactly, just how, possibly but to be proved, demanding proof, 
a wish to be convinced. Young-Morgan have this equivalent to xa- 
(cp. 7.2.) in the phrase da-cq? 'dU "of course" (FS 4) : 

da--tSi perhaps, maybe 

da'-tii'd possibly a little better than normal 

da< dacq? xo-ti how is it there ? (NT 206 : 26) 

da- ye*' xo*fyd exactly what happened ? what is the matter ? 

da* dadaoMindah whatever you plural do (NT 178 : 27) 

11.94. c/- "possibly, probably" seems to be an independent 
particle in some instances, in others, it is appended to a combination 
of elements : 

cf- ndi (in context) possible but (AB) 

yisk^-go- naxodo'ltj-l c{- it will probably rain tomorrow, it may rain 

tomorrow (FS 24) 
xd-dji-cp somewhere; time after time probably (YM 92, FS 25) 
xd'di-ci* wherever it may be; where-remote-place-possibly 
xdi-cf* someone; who-remote-possibly 
xdhgd'-ci' or xd-gd--ci- it is awful, terrible, extreme 
dv to xd'dji'-cf- ndo-goh this water will flow (as far as) somewhere; 

this water to-whatever-point possibly it-will-plunge (YM 92) 

11.94.-11.96. SYNTAX 319 

xa-cf- ne-ld-' nd-x&i-dfr* many years ago; what-possibly there-is- 

number again-winters-ago (FS 25) 
k$- xa'-ci- nli-h you might do something about it (FH, EW 78: 13) 

11.95. A particle, Id "surely, evidently, obviously," was discussed 
as a syntactic element (11.48-1 1.48a.); here it is illustrated in com- 
bination with the interrogatives previously discussed. With an 
interrogative it is more indirect than -cq,\ by means of which a direct 
question is implied; Id has the idea of "wonder," the person asking 
would like to know, but asks indirectly. Sometimes it is emphatic, 
"how in the world . . . , why in the world " Id occurs in combina- 
tion for some of the most common sayings, greetings, and the like : 

da-Id yiti, da-Mitt (or xa* Id yiti) exactly how is it ? what color is it ? 

how is he (patient) ? (AB) 
dofcwi- Id nindxai how old may you be ? (FS 16) 
xa- Id 'dnini-h what are you trying to do ? (YM 60) 
xa- Id ^dxdne-h what is happening ? Very common as a greeting, 

"hello!"; it also has a connotation of sympathy (YM 161) 
xa- Id ''dxo-dza- what has happened ? Also a common greeting, with the 

connotation of surprise (YM 161) 
xa' Id H-nidza- what happened to you ? what did you do ? wonder you- 

have-done -something (YM 160) 
xa* Id yinidza* what happened to you ? I wonder it-happened-to-you 

(YM 160) 
xa- Id yiti, xa- liiti what is the matter with it ? I wonder what is the 

matter with it (of something that is wrong) 
xa- UM-go (< Id yiti) how did it happen to be wrong ? I wonder what 

went wrong with it (AB) 
xa'dti- Id xadini'i*' what in the world are you looking for ? (FS 16) 
xa- Id yini-h or xa* liind-h what may be happening to him ? I wonder 

what he is doing (YM 161) 
xai Id 'dnfy who are you ? I wonder who you may be (less blunt than 

xdicq') (FS 16) 
xd-di Id 'ddei'tf where can we plural be ? where in the world are we ? 

(FS 16) 
xd-di Id tidinltf wherever did you find it (baby) ? (NT 38 : 18) 
xd*g6- Id diniyd where are you going, if I may ask ? (AB) 
xd*dji y Id how far, just where to if I may ask ? (FH, FS 15) 
xd-djigo Id yd y dt6- Id ni he said, "I wonder which direction is best;" 

where-toward-a-point-being wonder place-it -is-good wonder he- 
says (FS 16) 
xa'dtfrgo Id I wonder how . . . (used if conditions are contrary to ex- 
pectations) (AB) 
xa* Id td- *eiyd ... nV now let's see . . . (used in an attempt to recall 

something momentarily forgotten (FS 12) 
xa- Id td* 'iiyd yinilyi- nV now let's see! what is your name ? 
xa* Id td* 'iiya yite- ni' now let's see, how was it ? how did it look ? 

(FS 12) 
xa- Id td- y eiyd dji'Vyh ni* now let's see! what does one do (next) ? 

(of a step in a process) (FS 12) 

11.96. oca* Id yi* ... ye* don't dare to ... . The second ye* may be 
used or omitted, and the fourth person is required even if the threat 
or admonition is given to the second person (cp. 11.66.): 

320 KAVAHO GBAMMAB 1 1 .96.-1 1 .98. 

xa-h Id yd- H-djilxac (yd-) don't dare bite! (FH, FS 12) 
xa-h Id yd- ^adji-lxoc (yd-) don't dare go to sleep ! (FS 12) 
xa-h Id yd- tdidjiyd-h (yd-) don't you dare come out ! (FS 12) 

11.97. Id finality, decision. lq may enter into interrogative or 
indirect pronominal complexes : 

xa-hcf- 14 let's undertake it whatever the consequences 
xd-di Id wherever possible 

11.98-11.100. Interrogatives with : \Be" 

11.98. Many independent elements, bound prefixes, and other 
elements are combined with -te "be" to form interrogative or 
indefinite pronominal complexes : 

deifd (< da*-yitd) is it possible ? how is it ? (FH) 

di-c da-yitd, di-c deitd exactly what is wrong with this ? how is it 

that . . . ? 
da-cftd (< da-ci- yifd) I don't know exactly (FH, NT 142:7,8) 
xaitd (< xa yitd) how is he ? (FH) 
xa ntd how are you ? (FH) 
ciicidi da-ci- y*& c & nmiPt see what is the matter with my car (Ad 

da' liiti-go (< da- Id yifd--go) tdd-h ydcti' exactly why does no one answer 

me; how-is -it- that in-vain I-speak (WE) 
da- liitd- Id to- % dt\ I wonder if it is just pretending; why-is-it evident- 
ly merely doing-thus (EW 114:18) 
da- Id xo-td how is it that . . . ? (WE) 
xa- liiti-go (< Id yitd-goh), xa- la yitd why is it that . . . ? (admittedly 

something is wrong) 
xa-c yitd lijin la* what's the matter that it is black ? (I did not expect it 

to be black) (AB) 
xa-cq* yitd what's wrong with it ? ^it is all right) (AB) 
xa-cq* yifd-go being as it is, what's to be done about it ? (AB) 
nitcidicq' xaite-go (< xa-yi-td-go) dilyo* how fast is your car ? your-car- 

question how-is-it it-runs (YM 17) 
'dicq? *di xa- yiti-goh what's the matter with this ? how can this be ? (AB) 
nmfeq* xa* yitd how is your mother (who has been ill) ? 

xaitigocq' (< xa-yi-) f xai-tSgocq J (< xa*-yi-) how, why ? 

xaitfrgocq? 'dV{ how is it done ? 

xaife-gocq' do- cit&£ ydnlWdah why do you not speak to me ? (YM 94) 

'dtd it is thus * 

da-ccf 'did 'dltsd J iy# of course, go ahead and eat first; exactly- question 

it-is-thus first you-eat-something (FS 4) 
da-cq' 'did de-sUa-z ndo of course, I'm cold (why wouldn't I be ?) (FS 4) 
xd i dtdd$-' > Id yind-l where do you come from ? (NT 52 : 5) 
xasti-nci* *itd (<C y dtd) whatever kind of man he may be (NT 34: 17) 
xa'dfidgo some way or other, (in) whatever way (NT 34 : 22) 
xa'dtigocq' how ? why ? in what way ? (AB) 

xa'dtd-gi where specifically (practically the same as xd-di) (YM 93) 
xa'dti-gidah wherever (YM 93) 
xa'dte-gicq* (or xa'dte-gic) ni-ni'd exactly where did you leave the round 

object ? (YM 93) 

L98.-ll.100. SYNTAX 321 

xa'dfe-go (or xa'dti-c bini-na-) fd* adhd* sindd why do you live alone ? 

xa'ate-gocq' do-le-l why should it be ? 
xa'dfi-gocq' nl\ why is it flowing ? (FH) 
xa'dMd^cq' where in the world from (AB) 
xadte-gocq? nvhzin how (why) do you want it ? (FH) 
xa'dfe-goci- how possibly (I can't understand how or why) 
xadt'e-goci' t6il 'ddin I don't understand why there is no grass (YM 93) 
xa'df&go Id yid4 bow is it eaten ? (NT 30: 10) 

11.99, oca'dti', xa'dfi-h often seems to mean the same as xa'dte. 
Jsage however seems to show that xotdfv is the more indefinite of 
he two complexes, meaning perhaps "what, if there is such a thing, 
vhy if there is such a reason." Note that xa'dt'e is followed by a 
)ostposition designating an exact place or motion, or by -go "what 
hings being thus," whereas xa'dfi is followed by the indefinite 
enclitics; it often means "how, why": 

xa'dfi-h what is it ? how (I didn't hear) ? (AB) 

xa'dfi-c what is it ? (cp. xa'dU-c "where is it ?" FH) 

xa'dti- "dU what is it ? (NT 16: 16) 

xa'dfi- ye- 'driff who are you ? (NT 62:5) 

xa'dfi- Hfi who is he ? (NT 64 : 26) 

xa'dfi-dah whatever ; how-amongst (if there is such a thing) 

xa'dfi--cf- yiyi'yd'' he ate something (possibly there was something to 

eat) (YM 94) 
xa'dfi-c bike- H-ni-dza- how did you get that way ? how according-to-it 

it-happened-to-you (YM 160) 
xa'dfi-c bq-h why ? for what reason ? (AB) 
xa'dfi-cq* bini-na* why, for what particular reason (AB) 
xa'dfi-cq' biniyi what for ? for what purpose (AB) 
xa'dfi-c bvnvyi yiniyd why have you come ? (AB) 
xa'dfi-c bikd yiniyd what did you come for, after ? (AB) 
xa'dfi*c bini-yi diniyd why did you start out ? why are you going ? (AB) 
xa'dfi-cq' what is it ? (YM 94) 

xa'dfi-cq* bini-yi 'dnfi why did you do it ? (YM 94) 
xa'dfi-cq' ninzin what do you want (YM 94) 
xcfatt'C dine'4 ne'esdzd-n what is your wife's clan ? (FH) 
xa'dft-c ne'esdzd-n ya- na-ydh what does your wife do ? (FH) 
xa'dti-c bfrxd&inic how should I know ? what do I know ? (FH) 
xa'dff-cq' 'dU what is it (inanimate obj.) ? 
xa*dt$-cq > W$ what is it (animate obj.) ? 
xa'dtf-cq* (xa'dfi-c) nl\ who are you ? 
xa'dfi Id what in the world (NT 24 : 18, 38 : 9) 

11.100. The following are combinations of elements and processes 
tihat have been separately discussed — syntactic particles, inter- 
rogatives, negatives, etc. : 

do- fa- 'adfy'dd-c (< 'adlq-dah-ic) leh it isn't good to drink, is it ? not 
absolutely something-to-drink-not-question cust. 

do- ndfohdd-c (< -dah-ic) leh it isn't good to smoke, is it ? not smoke- 
negative-question cust. (FH) 

do* na-fodd-c (< -fod-dah-ic) it isn't flexible is it ? not it-is-flexible-not- 
question (FH) 

322 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.100.-11.103. 

*ad4'd4*c do* narlijo*jig6* nainiyd-dah didn't you go to Gallup yester- 
day ? yesterday-question not toward- Gallup you-went-about-not 
(FS 14) 

fd' do- naxiridni sinizf stand still; absolutely not you-move-about you- 
stand (YMG 55) 

id* do- nltcigo sinddhi ni-h dolkas you will take cold if you sit in a draft ; 
absolutely not when(where)-wind-is you-sit into-you cold-will-move 
(Ad 12/48:5) 

td' do- ndddhi 'i'v'Q'go bwivna* 'i*^*' since he had not returned by 
sunset I ate; not he-returns the-sun-having-set that's-the-reason 
I-ate (YMG 48) 

td' do* cq-h nini'i nil ni*go cil xolne* he told me to tell you not to 
worry; absolutely not indifferent -to your-worry with-you-saying 
with-me he-reported-things (YMG 55) 

11.101-11.118. Connectives and Clauses 

11.101. Now that the elements of the language have been dis- 
cussed and examples given to show how each fits in, we may take up 
more complicated utterances in which various ideas are expressed. 
Some, simple in form, express complex ideas in English; others, 
apparently simple in English, may be quite cumbersome in Navaho. 
First, a few examples are given to indicate the position and function 
of modifiers in the sentence : 

nUi be'ekih xalfydji Id sitin (< aUf-wi) over there (remote) at the black 
lake he lies it is reported; over-there-remote lake black-place-side 
it-is-reportedliving-obj.-is (EW 112:20) 

na-be'ho bikiyah bikd^gi dibi nsini^ I distributed the sheep on the 
Navaho reservation; Navaho their-land in-place-on-it sheep I- 
moved-about-with-hands (YM 157) 

nU-di xol ' ctttsfrdUj,'' xol ba-tx^ 'o'lde^ over there at the place where those 
conducting him had first attacked; over-there-at with-him(4) first- 
past with-him(4) attacking-them group-has-been -moving-off (BS) 

11.102. Connectives have been included among bound forms 
(7.46-7.47.). -dff or -do* "and, also, in addition" may connect verbs 
as well as nouns : 

id-' belagd-na td** belagd-na 'asdzdni 'aidd' yah'adjo'kaih three white 

men and three white women came in. 'aldo* is an independent 

word, probably composed of '(^-reciprocal and -do" "also.'* 
dd'dilkal 'q- 'dyi*la*d6* yatiano'lne* he opened the door and took a 

quick look in; curtain-in-front hole he-made-also round-obj.-was- 

moved-inside (YM 164, 191) 
cibe-ldlii niiailtahdd' 'i-lxd-j I unrolled my blanket and went to sleep ; 

my -blanket I-caused-untying-and I -went -to -sleep (YM 186) 
W^' xazlj'' do* bikidji* la' nd-xasdly' a baby was born and afterward 

another was born; baby became-and afterward one-again-became 

(YM 125) 
naxaltindo- kos ^axxdi-tV rain and clouds are connected ; rain-and clouds 

are-together-in-a-line (YM 199) 

11*103. When two nouns are mentioned correlatively the post- 
position -I "with, accompanying" may be used (cp. 11.102. where 

1.103.-11.105. syxtax 323 

ildo- is used; in that statement the men and women were not 
ecessarily together) : 

'dko 'ei 'dial xastvn 'dtsi i eadz4' bil td'yisi- bil bfrxdzm td* *dko do-ni-lgo 
thus First Man and First Woman well understood what was to 
happen; thus this first-man first-woman with -him very -well under- 
stood just-how it-will-happen (EW 90:5) 

bil yigd>l he is going on horseback, he is riding; with-him it-is-going 

l\s cil dind-Ui'l I'll gallop on horseback; horse with-me will-straighten- 
out-prol. (YM 209) 

ley xd'djvci' to bil 'adaxa-tfi-l time after time the water washed the 
soil away; soil some where water with-it rep.-washed-off (FS 25) 

dini bil ninidji'* the people surrounded him; people with-him plural- 
persons-moved-to-end (WE) 

le-tcq-'i bil nariicka-d I am herding with my dog; dog with-it I-am- 
spreading-something-about (YM 29) 

ley xol dayik^do* soil with him (coyote's flesh) they ground also (WE) 
(In this example both -I and -dd- are used.) 

11.103a. The word Hnda, 'inda "and, furthermore, moreover" 
jeems to have the same function as -do* "also." It connects nouns as 
well as clauses (cp. 7.47.) : 

gd-gi Hnda tqji- 'inda xaziiZiosi- 'inda ntficdja*' 'axidji-kai crow and 
turkey and chipmunk and owl had come together (NT 16:1) 

'atevnltiicUa'' xatso'olyalUa*' cdbitio-lka*' nd-tsi-lidka-' 'inda be-cxal 
niidi'la-hQ- the zigzag lightning arrow, the straight lightning 
arrow, the sunray arrow, the rainbow arrow, and the flint club 
which he picked up (EW 192:18) 

'a-d$-' ndcdoi-tsoh 'inda gini 'ei-di xq- xd-dayv&dil mountain lion and 
prairie hawk (came) (to) extract them (witch obj.) from him; from- 
there (came) mountain-lion and prairie-hawk extraneous-to-him(4) 

11.104-11.111. Glauses 

11.104. Relative and substantive clauses are formed by suffixing 
4gv "that which, the one who, the place where" to almost any form 
(cp. 5.30.): 

di- 'acki* 'dltMsigi- to koniydnidjj' 'i-lxd-c this little boy is taking a nap ; 

this boy the-one-who-is-little merely is-going-to-sleep (Ad 12/48:5) 
bily" da-ztsdnigv be- bi'te-cnih I'll call his attention to the fact that his 

horse is dead; his-horse the-one-that-died with-him I -shall -report- 
something- (to ) -him 
td* 'dcidininigi' 'dde-cni-l I'll do whatever you say; just that-which- 

you-tell-me I-will-do-thus (YM 160) 
'ei gd-gi 'dti-yigv 'itdo (<C Htd'-go) ya- naxasni' that crow tbftt-was-the- 

one-who f lying-off to-him explained-things (EW 92 : 22) 
'adq-dUj,-' td' do* nicinilnicigv ba- 'dko nain I am aware of the fact that 

you did not work yesterday; yesterday that-which-is-not-having- 

worked about-it-I-know-thus (YM 243) 

11.105. The following clauses, dependent in English, are expressed 
n Navaho without a subordinating element : 

22 Keichard 

324 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.105.-11.106. 

da? cil di-'acic ninzin do you want to go with me ? question with-me 

da? djanic de-cd-l nzin does John want to go with me ? question John- 
question he-will-go you-think 

ntdf xade-sdzih nsin I want to speak to you; toward-you I-shall-speak- 
out I -want 

ko xone' la-no,- nsin nty-"* I was hoping this would happen; thus things- 
happen it-would-be I-want past (YM 160) 

citcidi ninzin 'ei be- dind-h if you want my car, take it ; my -car you- 
want-it that with-it you-will-go (Ad 12/48:5) (cp. ndtoh la y ninzingo 
cindtoh bizis biyi'd^-' la' xanityh "if you want a cigarette take ono 
out of my pack; cigarette one if-you-want my-tobacco its-pack 
from-out-of-it one take-long-obj.-out [Ad 12/48:5].*' -gro, the sub- 
ordinating element, may be used or omitted in expressions like 

11.106. The preceding examples all have "think" or "want" as a 
verb; the following do not contain these modifications, there is 
more than one clause without a subordinating element : 

naxasdzd-n bikd-" 1 tioh be- xodo-tlij n&xdsdli-' the earth has become green 
again; earth-woman on-it grass by-its-means place-is-green place- 
has -become-back (YM 126) 

rahgo-cj- bi-' djijtfrj 'altso ndji-Uoh surprisingly enough the two lying 
inside completely finished the smoke; my! in-it they(4)-two-lay all 
they -smoked-it (EW 104: 15) 

"ilxoc lei' nitdf ydctV oddly enough you are asleep (while) I am talking 
to you; you-are-asleep surprisingly to-you I-am-talking (YM 129) 

xdni* 'iyildin fa- xoti xa* na-yd she(4) was distracted by what she was 
doing; her(4)-mind she-caused-to-disappear just as-things-are she 

nte-\ nti'' often means "past, used to be but is no longer," but in 
the following examples and others like them, it seems to mean "but, 
contradictory;" it is sometimes interchangeable with ndi (11.110.): 

mq'j,' yillsq nsin nt$-' (or ndi) to- cil 'ddza* Id I thought I saw a coyote 
but I just imagined it; coyote I-saw-it I-thought but merely with- 
me it-happened it-must-be (YM 162) 

bil d€d-] nty-* (ndi) to- 'd-xosistj-d Iwas going with him but I backed out; 
with-him I-had-started-to-go-dual but merely thus-back-it-was- 
done-by-me (YM 202) 

na'kiyd-l bi-de-ckil nsin M^ td bitdf yifyd I wanted to ask him for a 
quarter but I hesitated; two-bits I-will-ask-him-(for) I-want but 
merely from-him I -hesitated (YM 207) 

kvntahgo- di-kah nsin tity (ndi) 'axorii-U$ I wished we would go to town 
but it rained ; town-to we-started-out I-want but it-rained (YMG 47) 

6e* 'o-dle-hi be- goliji- siloh nt^ yi-h xana-lyod I caught a skunk in the 
trap but it escaped; trap with-it skunk I-trapped but out-of-it it- 
ran-out (Ad 1/49:8) 

bi'ticle-h nt^ ya- ' } dxoni-zi-' > I was fooling him but he caught on; I-was- 
cheating-him but for-him thus-things-were-an-attitude (Ad 1/49:9) 

'axil xwi-lne* nt$- y (ndi) 'asdzdni la' bind-l xadine-sdzi-* we were con- 
versing but I said something (obscene, insulting) I ought not to say 
before a woman; we-were-communicating with-each-other but 
woman some before-her I-got-stuck-speaking-out (YM 68, FH's 

11. 106.-11. 107a. SYNTAX 325 

ciye' 'ayoi 'andcni- nti^ t66-h y 6ni*V%*d my son! I loved you greatly but 

I could do nothing with you (NT 46 :29) 
Iq'i ye- naeine'Zt^'' M6- 1 'altso cil ^alta-ndskai he taught me so much that 

I got confused; many -things with-them he-instructed-me but all 

with -me got-mixed-up (YM 110) 
bi'so la* caHo-nil nsingo Wtictci- M^ bil bi-xo-zin he understood that I 

was beating about the bush to borrow money ; money some he-will - 

lend-me I-wanting I-beat-about-the-bush but he-understood-it 

(YM 36) 

11.107. The most common subordinating enclitic is -go which 
forms various kinds of clauses. It may be affixed to independent 
forms or to a combination of bound forms to show a relation to the 
rest of the sentence; this is one of my reasons for considering all 
"words" essentially verbal : 

'e'e^a-hdji-go cikdyah, or 'e'e'a-hdji cikdyahgo my land is on the west 

side; west -side-being my-land-is or west-side my -land-being (YM 

106, FH) 
'ancf'-go tidide-cni-l ca'cin nsin I think I may be wounded in the war; 

enemy-being I-shall-be-injured perhaps I-think (YM 160) 
isin biya-dji-go sMd I am sitting under a tree; tree under- it-side-being 

I-am-sitting (YM 31) 
do-JQ'-go ndizni-tih he staggered considerably; not-controlled -being he- 

moved-in-a-line (EW 110:6, 9) 
ciyanido- cdda'd'hdji-go citcei- biyan my grandfather's house is south of 

mine ; that-which-is-my-home-from south-side-being my-grand- 

father his-house (YM 176) 
id- 'ani-di-go Alaska bitdf 'axo-tV-go 'dxo-lya- only very recently a new 

highway was built to Alaska; just very-recently-it-being Alaska 

toward-it some-place-being-in-a-line it-was-made-thus (YM 199) 

11.107a. -go may change a verb into a participial clause ; note that 
some examples are verbs used as nouns, -go makes them verbal 
nouns in the English sense : 

yiskfy-go kwe'6 na-cd-go ce* na-ki nd'xai tomorrow I shall have been 
here two years; it-being-tomorrow here I-am-going-about with-me 
two years-have-passed (YMG 48) 

'i'nicta'-go ba- cil xorwni I enjoy reading; reading-being for-it with- 
me there-is-amusement (YM 165) 

bitsinil x$lQ--go sitf holding his stone ax he lay; his-stone-ax having 
a-live-obj.-lay (NT 128:14) 

do'dah t64- bidjinv-go saying "no" to him in vain; no in -vain she(4)- 
saying-to-him (WE) 

ci xo-sni-^-go ba'altcini 'olta'dji 1 ni-ninil taking my advice he put his 
children in school; I having-advised-him his-children school-to- 
ward-a-point he-moved-several-obj.-to-the-end (Ad 12/48:5) 

bitii'zis bitlo-l ko ye' 'dnltsxdzi llad$- Mto'd-go ye' dah-'o-ldzil with a 
tumpline so frail it was ready to break she carried her pack; her- 
burden its-cord so comparatively-thin ready to-break with-it she- 
moves-along-carrying-pack (EW 120:3) 

dam$--go fa- ni* xd-djidah na-c&'-go cil ya'at&'h I like to take a walk on 
Sundays; Sunday -being just earth somewhere I-am -going- (being) 
with-me it-is-good (Ad 12/48:5) 

326 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.107a.-11.107o. 

njoni-go na'akai-go ba- cil xonfrnvd I enjoyed a good Night Chant 

dance; being-nice pl.-persons-going-about(dancing) for-it with-me 

there-was-amusement (YM 165) 
fd- do'JQ'-go xodfrncf-go 'a-d^ ndne-sdzyd it was considerably longer 

when from there he slid back; considerably time-having-passed 

from-there he-arrived-back-and-squatted (WE) 
tsidi- bitdj' 'andxitcf-go ni-lts^ I saw you darting at the bird; bird to- 

ward-it you-rep. -darting I-saw-you (YM 187) 
niba* 8&dd--go "* ddaxodiclxd^ I got bored waiting for you; awaiting-you 

I-sitting got-bored (YM 143) 
tsidd bi 'ddanodnme-ni ' dkojno'lnm-go 'ddaxo-la- they(4) were made as 

beautiful as they were; exactly they were-beautiful-the-ones- 

mentioned so-they(4)-resembled-being they-were-made-thus (EW 

ca>* nd*a-h bidicni-~go niisiskan I begged him to give it to me; "to-me 

give-round-obj." I-saying-to-him I-begged (YM 110) 
fd' 'dladji J dib6 fd- do- yo-'andnirlili ndicni'-go y adand4clxd' y I'm tired of 

continually having to tell you not to lose the sheep; just-toward- 

every -direction "sheep don't-lose-them" I-saying-to-you I-am- 


11.107b. -go may be used to create a statement qualifying a noun 
or pronoun : 

'ac&v biMi' *ddin-go binesd I brought up the orphaned boy; boy his- 

relatives being-lacking I-raised-him (YM 176) 
'ei gd-gi 'dltcini na^a*c-go yiyvltsq) Id those crows saw the two children 

going about; those crows children two-going-about they-saw-them 

to-be-sure (EW 92:18) 
nixisild--go bikiyah yd'atida-ff'-go la' 'dda-din ailf'' some of our soldiers 

have died for their country; being-our-soldiers their-country for- 

its-benefit injury -having-been-done-thus-to some they -nothing 

have-become (YM 163) 
bitdd-dji'' d4c'y-go bi-yah Uiniyd I looking the other way passed him; 

in-a-direction-away-from-him I-looking moving-alongside-him I- 

went-out (YM 31) 
itzd-dgo- d6yd'-go citdf dahndesni-' he waved at me as I was leaving; 

moving-to-a-distance I-having-started-to-go toward-me he-waved 

(YM 156) 

11.107c. -go may be suffixed to form a temporal clause. In this 
type of clause the dependent and independent clauses seem to be 
just the reverse of those in English— actually the process is the 
same as that just illustrated: 

kirUahdi na-cd'-go 'dxo-fy-d I was in town when it happened; in -town 

when-I-was-going-about it-happened (YM 161) 
biyandi yiniyd'-go yo-H-ya- do-le-l by the time you get to his place he 

will be gone; his-home-at when-you-have-arrived he-has-gone-away 

it-will-be (YMG 48) 
to* djiniyd'-go xol xwe-cne y as soon as he came I told him; just when- 

he(4)-arrived with-him(4) I-reported-things (YMG 17) 
djiniyd'-go xol xode-cnih I'll tell him(4) when he comes; when-he-has- 

arrived with -him I-will-communicate (YMG 17) 
bi-c 'altSo-zi Minidla-d-go ciUidji* 'axo-tah when the wire broke it sprang 

at me ; iron narrow when-it-broke toward-me it-sprang (YM 187) 

ll.107c.-ll.108. syntax 327 

"awfr* ta-h yigo'-go nind'd dinicty-go bitdf ta-h yicyod when the baby 
fell into the water I risking my life went after it ; baby into-water 
when-it-plunged life I -risking toward-it into-water I-ran (YM 192) 

11.107d. -go followed by Hnda "then, and then" may form a 

temporal clause "as soon as, when then . . . ;" with a negative 

"not until" (cp. 11.73.): 

"d-di ni-td-j-go Hnda 'adi-df-l as soon as we arrive there we shall eat; 

there -remote-at when-we-two-have-arrived then we-shall-eat (YM 1) 
xodicni'-go Hnda ya?dU* when I say so then it will be the right time; 

when-I -say-things then it-is-good 
id- H-d4*' xol xwe-cne'go 7 inda yiniyd I had already told him when you 

arrived; already with-him I-having-reported-things then you*- 

arrived (YMG 47) 
xddti* dcb'Tii- do-le-l 'dko-go 'inda bd-xodo'zj-l whatever they say will be 

final; whatever they-say it-will-be so-being then it-will-be-known 
fd-kd t64ndo-si'd 'alnlriVQ'-go 'inda don't waken him until noon; don't 

waken-him when-it-is-noon then (YMG 107) 
tcij 'axidi'nilka-l-go Hnda yah'axidi-djah as soon as you have chopped 

the wood bring it in; wood when-you-have-chopped-it then move- 

pl.-obj. -inside (YM 103) 
Columbus bil 'o^ol-go na?axo*nd-d-go Hnda keya nixil dahsa 'dnigi- 

ya"rtiF6-l Columbus sailed for a long time to reach our land; 

Columbus with-it(ship) floating-beyond after-time-had-elapsed- 

indefinitely then land with-ours that-which-lies-on(contiguous to)-it 

reached-by-floating (YM 151) 

11.107e. -go may introduce a clause to be translated by English 
if or since : 

nina*nic bininidlp-go Iq'i nd*xilbi'h do*le*l if you take an interest in your 
work you will earn more; your-work if-you-are-interested-in-it 
much again-you-gain it-will-be (Ad 12/48:5) 

xacide-Vf-' -go-cq' xw xodo-ni-l what if he finds out about me ? what-if- 
he-finds-out-about-me-question what (more remote) will-happen 
(FS 24) 

Cd- nteidS-* xvje'esdzd-n 'atidjil'f'-go xodji-j 'eibq* xwe'esdzd-n Uasd^ 
xwi-sxinigi- td- biUixodo-ljici^ 'dti since he has been abusing his 
wife for years it served him right when she nearly killed him ; just 
that-one-from-therehis(4)-wife since-he-abuses for-a-long-time that 
is-the-reason his(4)-wife almost the-one-who-killed-him(4) it-served- 
him-right (Ad 1/49:9) 

11.107!. -go acts as a subordinating frame with tde' (t66* . . . -go) to 
indicate "futility, lack of accomplishment, mean to ..., but do 
not ...": 

t64' nzin-go he meant to; in-vain he-wanting 

kin *<dtso 'dde-cli-l 166- nishi-go to- bil nd-s xode-cji-j I meant to finish 
building the house but I kept putting it off; house all (completed) 
I-shall-construct I-meaning just with-it continuing I -kept -letting 
time-pass (YM 237) 

11.108. -go 'dte or -go zaz'q, with the future tense means "can, be 
able to, may . . . :" 

328 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 11.108.-11.111. 

di- ts4 dahdide-c* d-l-go *d£4 (or xaz'q)) I can lift this stone; this stone 
I-shall-be-moving-round-obj.-up-subordination it-is-thus (FS 11) 

nitteh dide-cdle-l-go *dti (or xaz y d) I can beat you (in a fight) ; according - 
to-you it-being-done-by-me-in-fut. -subordination it-is-thus (FS 11) 

naxodo'Uf'l-go *dU (or xaz'd) it is surely going to rain, it may rain; it- 
will-rain-subordination it-is-thus (FS 11) 

11.109. -goda '&U expresses possibility; it seems to be less certain 
than -go y d(i\ this combination is equivalent to ca'cin nsin "I think 

cvj&6 'dtp-goda *dU nsin I thought it might be my father; my-father 

possibly-being it-is-thus I-think (FS 12) 
kintahgo- de-cd-l-goda *dti I may go to town (FS 12) 
di- tse dahdide-c* d-l-goda 'dti (or xaz'q) I am going to lift this stone 

11.110. ndi is a contradictory word, "but, even, although, 

td* *dko ndi even then (he was under the spell) (NT 232 : 18) 

^alkidfy-* nxini* daxazty' ndi even though long ago we became sensible; 
long-ago our-minds became although (NT 294: 18) 

xaj6-go Midi* ndi td* do* bidi-tia*i so qiiietly even wind could not hear 
him (EW 96:11) 

8%Uis kingd* bil d&d-j bini*yi cdkdniyd xq- ndi citcei oil xaxodine-sne* I 
was going to town with my friend who came for me, but instead my 
grandfather had to spin out a long story ; my-friend to-town with- 
him I-was-going because he-came-for-me instead but my-grand- 
father with-me reported-things-prol. (YM 155) 

'dkd- nt6£ de*cd-l nt$'* ndi cina-nic xglfrgo bini-na- td* do* diyd-dah I 
would have gone to see you but I had work to do; there-remote to- 
you I-shall-go past but my-work being because-of-it I-did-not-get- 
started (YMG 48) 

cd biyah xaxonictd- tity-* ndi td- do* xaMnicahi to* ndnisdzd all day I 
looked for him but since I could not find him I came back; all-day 
I-looked-for-him(4) past but I-do-not-come-upon-him(4) just I- 
returned (YMG 48) 

11.110a. With the negative ndi means "not even" : 

be-so Id* I ndi do- na-c*a-dah I haven't even a dollar; dollar one even not- 

I-am-carrying-a-round-obj. (FS 21) 
belagd-na biza-d IdH ndi do- nii y d-dah he doesn't know a word of 

English; white-man his-word one even not he-carries-round-obj. 

(FS 18) 

11.111. Two words form a frame: 'ajq . . . ndi "even though . . . 

*ajd cibi-so x$l$ ndi td* do- la* ba- ninildah even though I had money 
nevertheless I did not give him any; though my -money there-was 
even (but) not some to-him I-moved-several-obj.-not (FS 2) 

7 aj(j, 'aydigo niyol ndi cil yd? dxo*t&-h to nte-l bi-yahgi lei* even though it is 
very windy nevertheless I like the place because it is beside the sea ; 
even though much-being it-blows nevertheless with-me the-place-is- 
good water wide beside-at because 

11.111.-11.113. SYNTAX 329 

'aj$ xasietih ndi 'ayo* Vc'£ even though ageing I can see well (YM 20) 
1 aj4 nza-dji' ndi 'altcin even though it is far off he can smell it 
di'" 'i-yisi day&ji 'aj4 xastd-h ndi four main poles are mentioned 
although there are six (NT 108 : 11) 

11.112-11.118. Cause 

11.112. Cause is expressed by various words or elements which 
conform to other parts of the language. Under certain conditions 
several are interchangeable, but there is usually one that cannot be 
used. The several possibilities will be indicated as well as those 
which are incorrect in the particular sentence. 

-bqr is suffixed to demonstrative pronouns : 

di-'bq* for this reason, because of this (NT 294: 11) 

'ei-bq* because of that 

'di-bq- *4i-bq- for that (remote) reason 

'atah 'inda 'axil xodvlnik Mad tsididvndji* yinicti *4ibq- let's talk later 
because now I have too much to do ; remote-interval then together - 
with we-shall-talk-over-things now too-many -things 1-am-bothered- 
bythat's-why (FS 29) 

nil nil- tlohdah dantcpigi* nyfygo 'di niyi y xdlfygo 'dibq- (or bini-na-, 
xd-ld, be* V&, but not bini-yi) do- dinilyo'dak you cannot run fast 
because of the kind of stuff you eat ; whatever there grass-among- 
other-things those-things-which -are- junk you-eating-it those inside- 
you being that's-why you -cannot -run 

11.113. -ni'ncr "because of ..." is treated like a postposition, 
having a possessive pronominal prefix, -ni'na* seems to be used if 
there is a defined or implied struggle or opposition: 

tcaxalxe-lgo bmi-na- xwe-silgo tdiniyd I groped my way because of the 
darkness; it-being-dark its-reason groping-for-things I-went-out 
(YM 240) 

tcaxalxe-lgo binvna- do* xo-tfdah there is no visibility because of dark- 
ness; it-being-dark its-reason things-cannot-be-seen (YM 30) 

do- 'osoxodo-bi'jgd- 'dnixi'V^-d 'altdni da'oltaH binvna- he treated us 
very badly because of the school children; very badly he-caused -us- 
to-be-thus children they-who-go-to-school because-of-them (NT 

*altcini t64-h bVtvdvgo *ii binvna- ndadvtctf because the children were 
asked for in vain they became angry ; children in-vain they-being- 
asked-for that-is-the-reason they-became-enraged (NT 374: 11) 

tcidi biki , ida t zgo binvna^ bike-' de-sdo-h the tire blew out because the 
car is overloaded; car on-it being-heavy that-is-the-reason its-tire 
(foot) blew-out (YMG 51) 

to 'axayoi 'l-yfygo binvna- siziz dinvltld^ I loosened my belt because 
I ate a lot; much I-having-eaten that-is-why my -belt I-loosened-it 
(YM 217) 

'a^*' ba* nanicttahgo binvna' do* na'cnicdah I do not work because I am 
ST handicapped by a baby ; baby on-account-of-it I-being-handicapped 
'^that-is-why I-am-not-working (YM 211) 

'ayo* J ani'j*hgo binvna* 'aw&'lya sidd he is in jail for stealing; much 
stealing because-of-it in-jail he-sits (YM 201) 

380 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 11.113.-11.116. 

cind'Ue didi-n bvnvna* do* yic J f*dah I cannot see because the sun is 
shining in my eyes; my-eyes-place it-shines that-is- the-reason I-do 

do- "dkwi- Hnitf-dahgo bini-na- \itini-cla* I punished you because you 
did not behave; not-your-behaving that-is- why I-punished-you 
(YM 133) (-dahgo bini-na- is here equivalent to Hi'). Other ways to 
express the clause to which bini-na* refers are : do* 'dkwi- * ante-go and 
do- ^alcwi- "dnte-dah y ei. 

'asdzdni bini-nani* bdiltsq:* the woman who was pregnant by him; 
the-particular-woman-who-because-of-him pregnancy-for-him-was- 
caused (NT 36:16) 

xa'dfx-c bini-na- what is the reason ? why ? (same as xa'dte-gocq') (FH) 

11.114. -niyi has a possessive pronominal prefix; it seems to 
indicate a cause which has no implied opposition : 

ciyan gone 1 bi*dolkd-l bmi*yi badvdVo} I allowed him to spend the night 

in my home; my-home inside night -passed-over-him that-is-the- 

reason I-allowed-it-to-him (YM 3) 
Uad cd ni'to-ljihgo- bmi-yi diyd now I am going to get a haircut; now 

for-my-benefit hair-cutting-will -be that-is-the-reason I-started-off 

(Ad 1/49:8) 
xgjo yide-stsi-l bini-yi na-st4g*d I am craning my neck in order to see 

properly; properly I-will-see because-of-it I-am-stretching-about 

(YM 226) 
tcidi neilbq*s do*le*l bvniyi binabinictin I am teaching him to drive a 

car; car he-rolls-it-about it-will -be that-is-the-reason I-am-instruct- 

ing-him (YM 209) 
djan blip* ca^to*lii*l biniyi 'dbidicni I am asking John to lend me his 

horse; John his-horse he-will-lend-me that-is-the-reason I-am- 

speaking-thus-to-him (YM 166) 
bimAyi nannd-ni* that which you are seeking; the-particular-thing- 

because-of-which-you-are-going-about (NT 110:7,10) 
td- y a-ni- cibiso to- 'axayoi ndi td- do* bi/niyihidah Id actually I had lots 

of money but I found it useless; it-is-true my -money there-was- 

much but not-there-was-a-reason (FS 15) 

11.115. be m *it& "because conditions are such that . . . " : 

dibiydji tah ndi y dda*lt4i*ai td* do* naxaltini yicf *6i be* 9 4t4 (or *6ibq* or 
bini-na*) the lambs are still small because there has been no rain 
this summer; lambs still even are-small absolutely-it-does-not-rain 
summer-passes that-is-the-reason (YM 24) 

kin g6ne y de*8tta*z kg' "ddin *6i be- '#52, or kin gone* de*aUa'*z kg* 'ddm 
bini'na* the house is cold because there is no fire; house inside it- 
is-cold fire-is-lacking that-is-the-reason (YM 24, FH) 

11.116. xd'ld may introduce a causal clause: 

xd-ld yd^dxo-U-go, or yd'dxo*ti-go bmina*, or yd'dxo'U-go be- y 6te* (but not 
yd'dxo-te-go bmiyd) because it is a nice place (FH) 

xd-lddah td-xahi nike'nisdzd '£-bq* because-for-one-reason I am going 
home in a short time (FH) 

xd*ld na- 'defy because I am doing it for you 

xd-ld bini-na- nd-H-zni-H* for such a reason that which has been offered 
(will not be accepted) (NT 206: 15) 

11.116.-11.118. SYNTAX 331 

do- fide-cdd-ldah xd-ld do- cil yd'dxo-ti-hdah, or do* Me*cdd'ldah do- cil 
y&'axo'ffrgo bini-na* I am not going (coming) back because I do 
not like the place (YM 92) 

11.117. Compare the following: 

xd di* bini-yi 'dnfy why do you do this ? what-remote this because-of-it 

xd-ld na- 'defy because I am doing it for you; because on-your-account 

nd 'defy I am doing thus for your benefit 
xddi bmi-na- 'dnfy why are you doing thus ? what-remote because-of-it 

xd- Id* nfy what are you doing ? 

11.118. lei' may be equivalent to -go binvna* of the frame do* . . . 
-dah-go bini'na*, or to 'ei&qr, biniye, xd'ld, but not to bini'na,' or 
be* 'iti "not . . .because": 

citcidi bike-* yd'dda-U-h lei' na-kai bikiyago* be* de*cd-l ni*z\-' because 
my tires were good I thought I would go to Mexico; my-car its- 
tires they-are-good because Mexican his-land-toward with-it(car) 
I-shall-go I-thought (FS 20) 

do* citah xwi*rid*dah lei* cibe*6ldg-h t6&-h dahdi-t\-h because I was weak 
I could not lift my gun ; not my -body moves-negative because my- 
gun in-vain I-(tried-to)4ift (FS 20). do- citah xioi'rid'dah 'iibq' and 
do* citah xwi'tid-dahgo bini'na' are interchangeable forms, but do' 
citah xwi'nd'dah bini'yi and xd'ld do' citah xwiri-d.dah are not 

'ajq, 'ayoigo niyol ndi cil yd'dxo-ti-h to nte-l M-yahgi UV even though it is 
windy I like the place because it is beside the sea; though much- 
being it-blows yet I-like-the-place water wide beside-it-at because 
(FS 20) 

16*' xaxadle-higi' 'ayd* yi-ctcj-h lei bd na-cnicigi- do* td* cidin 16-' xa'al- 
'e-l-go- nayd-dah because I know a lot about fishing my boss never 
goes on a fishing trip without me; that-which-is-fishing well I-am- 
trained for-that-reason the-one-for-whom-I-work not lacking-me 
fish floating-out-along-toward he-goes-about-not (FS 20). 'Sibq*, be- 
*4t6, or xd-ld may be substituted for Ui\ but not bmi-na' or 
bini-yi (FH). td- do- may be used instead of do* td* without chang- 
ing the meaning (FH). 


12. The discussion of morphology and syntax has brought out the 
fact that a single category of ideas may be expressed by many or all 
the grammatical processes. In this section a few divisions of usage 
will be discussed to show how various processes may combine to 
denote kindred ideas. 

12.1-12.18. Time and Place 

12.1. We have seen that tense, though it may be said to exist— 
future, present, and past— is nevertheless subordinated to aspect, 
particularly progression and continuation (8.36-8.39.). Independent 
words may indicate time : 

tah interval of time, pause, time lapses 

xah when, immediate, general interrogative of time (cp. -xah "winter, 

year passes") 
xdk remote time 
tai'l at once, in a hurry 
tsxpl in a great hurry, very quickly 
'akbini, 'ahbifi morning 
td- xah a soon 

£&• y axan t td-'xan^fd-xan very soon, near 
'dtsi, 'dUsi first, before . . . 

12.2. Such "words," however, are often modified by postpositions 
that indicate whether the complex signifies past {~dq,-'), present 
{-di), or future (-g6 m ). In this respect independent words behave like 
nouns or other forms : 

'ahbin-dq-* earlier this morning ; this-morning-past 
'ahbin-go* later this morning; this-morning-future 
xdd4*-d4^-di where in all this time past (NT 52 : 15) 
xa-dzi'4'-d4^ at the time he spoke (EW 100: 11) 

td- dinH'ji'-gd* when in the future I have called the man by name 
(NT 296:20) 

12.3. Bound forms, especially pronominal or adverbial demon- 
stratives, may refer to time as well as to place: 

'd'do- from there near you; then 

'd*do* from over there remote; from that time 

ttad kodo- from now on (YM 237) 

'd-tah later; remote-interval (FS 29) 

biM-djV to a point over it ; afterward 

12.4.-12.7. TTSAGE AND VOCABULABY 333 

12.4. Postpositions or enclitics, suffixed to verbs may have 
temporal as well as locative value : 

n&nisdzd'-dji' until I return; I-have-returned-up-to-that-point 
'^•efyf*' kofi-go later (I became aware) of it 

A word like H'dq,*' "at that time" seems to be a yi-perfective 
verbal form (10.104.), so that -dq*\ which has just been called a 
"postposition," may be interpreted as a verbal stem. The "adverb" 
Uasdq' "almost" is also found as Ua 8idfy\ a st-perfective indicating 
that the verbal quality of -d^ is not far-fetched (NT 234: 29). 

12.5. Other apparently adverbial forms, which nevertheless have 
verbal possibilities, and to which postpositions may be suffixed are : 

nzah at a distance (but not very far) 

nza-d at an indefinite distance 

tiz&d so far as (farther than tiza'd) 

nld- over there (not very far) 

nl&'h over there (farther than nld- but still visible) 

Mix way over there 

12.5a. These "verbal adverbs" or "adverbial verbs," whatever 
they may be called, may also denote temporal ideas : 

itza-d-go- a long time in the future (YM 116) 
td' do- ndo* ho nizahi it wasn't long until . . . 
xa*ci tiz&'dgd' 'axododjic who knows how long in the future; time will 

pass who knows how far forward 
ibzah noxo-lji-jgoh when a short time had passed ; a-short-distance time- 

moved-to-an-end-when (NT 152:26) 
da-cp nzah-dji* dinS nd-s n&ididjih (sales) may help the Navaho quite a 

bit; possibly to-a-distant-point Navaho forward may-move-them- 

cust. (NT 414:10) 
do- zd--gi-dd' it is not at all long (until . . . ) (NT 218 : 23) 

12.6. One of the many generalized uses of the stem -a*l "round 
object moves" is the designation of time, the "round object" being 
the sun. Some of the cardinal directions are named from the pro- 
gression of the sun : 

xa'a'a-h east; round-obj.-is-starting-out-beyond 

cd da'a-h south; sun-startR-moying 

Ve'a*& west ; some-rcund-obj.-is-starting-beyond 

12.7. Temporal forms are constructed on the same stem: 

ne* 'ttd-Yo'-^H until the sun sets again with you (NT 44 : 22) 

fah do- xa'a'a-h-go' the sun has not yet risen (NT 320 : 26) 

td- daWadi^q* the sun had just come up (NT 388 : 14) 

kwe'i 'e-z'Q-go the sun being here (NT 36 : 23) 

'alnVi'4, *alnirlV$ midday, noon; center of the sky, zenith; round-obj.- 

9 ff4 sunset ; some-round-obj.-has-moved-off 
be- 'e'e'a-h she spent days there; with-her some-round-obj.-moves-off 

(NT 90:29) 

334 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.8.-12.11. 

12.8. The following terms indicate dates : 

xo-V a date was set (NT 124: 2) 

be* bd xo*'a y a time is set for them (children to go to school) (NT 376 : 1) 

xil ninoWa-h you two set a date (NT 262 : 23 ; 324 : 2) 

xil bd ndja'd-h they(4) set a date for it (chant) (NT 234 : 3) 

xrMgl* y axd ndadjitd-h they(4) agreed upon a date (NT 320:5) 

noxo-tdm,$-dji > until the date set (NT 276:18; 310:29; 362:27) 

xo-V d*g6* for all time, forever (NT 232:11) 

Compare the following examples with those above : 

y 4i tiidd be* noxo*Vd*go being the very last (act of the ceremony) 

(NT 214:20; 232:11) 
nnd-xo-Vd the rite ends again (NT 246 : 5) 

12.9. The passage of time spans is expressed in other verbal 
compounds. For example, night (or twenty-four-hour day believed 
to begin at night) is to be thought of as "night passes repeatedly:" 

yido*lkd-l night will pass 

yi*lka-h it is day 

yisk$ tomorrow, the next day; night-has-passed 

ci-do*lkd*l I shall spend the night; night-will-pass-me 

12.10. Age is expressed by the stem -xah "winter is, it is winter" : 

dokwi-c bindxai how old is he ? how-many winters-have-passed-him-in- 


ne'zntfa* cindxai I am ten years old; ten winters-have-passed -me-in- 


Compare: cido'xah "I shall spend the year, winter; winter-will- 
pass-me;" ce*xd'h "I am spending the year; year-starts-passing-me." 

Comparable stems for other seasons are treated as verbs of motion : 
dq'l "be spring, spring passes;" -c{*l "be summer, summer passes, 

12.11. More abstract expressions of time are created from several 
rerb stems: -rial "time passes, there is motion through a wide 
expanse, there is smooth motion over a surface" (this stem should 
lot be confused with -na-l "live, be alive, have the ability to 
nove"); -Ml "oscillate;" ~zil "revolve;" -jic "move in rhythmic, 
>rderly fashion." 

bind** dda*U$6zi bU dcfaxvgfygo na*axo-nd-d we fought the Japanese a 
long time; Japanese with-them together-we-killing a-long-time- 
passed (YM 151) 

xodt-na* there is delay, time passes (WE) 

do- xodt*na* quickly, time does not pass 

td- do* ne* xodina'i don't waste any more of my time (NT 394:21) 

to* xodtn&'go* soon, in a little while, sooner than id* xahd soon 

do* ce* xodo*naldah I won't last long at it; I will not stay with it (as 
job) ; not with-me things-will-move 

diyogi yiiid*gi td* xodi*na-h it takes time to weave a rug 

td* ndxodirla-hgo every once in a while (NT 384:24) 

nd'axo-nd-d it lasted a long time (NT 390: 19) 

12.12.-12.15. USAGE AKD VOCABTJIiABY 335 

12.12. The following words probably refer to machinery for 
registering time (as well as to other ideas) : 

'ax^ilkid hour; somethmg-oscillates-back-in-circle (YME 44) 
na'alkidi time by the clock; temperature; something-that-is-caused- 

na-lkidi time in general 

The following are derived from -zil "revolve, move in a cycle" : 

fide'zid month; cycle has been completed (AB, RP) 

ndizid month is passing 

ndxidizi'd months pass in succession 

yd yi-zi-d he is wasting time ; for-him time-is-passing 

na'dxodilzid he takes his time (Ad 12/48 : 7) 

12.13. The stem -jic "move rhythmically, move in order, move 
mechanically" is the basis of such time words as: 

tdoxo-lji-j as time went on (NT 74:26) 

djo-l be* ndadjinihigi- 'alni-'go* xodjic the ballgame is half over; the 

ballgame middle-toward time-moves (YM 237) 
JSad kodd' de-stta'zgo xodido-ljic from now on the weather will be cold; 

now here-from having-started-to-be-cold time-will-move (YM 237) 
dq-go id* niyolgo 'axododjic spring is a period of continual winds; 

spring-being just blowing time-starts-to-move-beyond 
fa- do- xodina'i destta'Z bil yo-'axodo-ljic cold weather will soon be over; 

soon cold with-it time-will-pass-on (YM 238) 
'a'Me-go 'ayo* ndaxaltingo 'andxdljic fall is a period of frequent rains; 

fall-being much repeated-rain-being time-passes-cust. (YM 238) 
td- nliidg'* xwe y esdzd'fi 'atidjiVi*go xodjvj he(4) has been mistreating 

his(4) wife for years; just from-over-there his(4)-wife doing-injury 

years-passed (Ad 1/49:9) 
na*be'ho nda-ba-kgo naxacjvj there was a time when the Navaho were 

raiders; Navaho going-about-raiding time-has-moved-about (YM 

tMddci' xa- Hnaxadji-cgo tin 1 exact time (was not known) (NT 366:8) 

12.14. Besides independent words, verbs, and affixes, several 
syntactic devices also indicate time. Among the bound forms -c' 
was listed as a future enclitic, -i' 9 as a past— both form temporal 
clauses of the elements to which they are suffixed: 

Uad-e" now will be a good time 
fahdn-e* y wait ! it will happen ! 
'akon-e*'* there ! you will see ! 

12.15. The suffix -r ' has meaning only in a context : 

yaWi-ydi-* ne*zdd after coming in he sat down (FS 14) 

xaya* xayikd'n-i-' biya' niyinifafc after having set it down before 

him(4) he set it down before him (self) (WE) 
bitcidi td- yo-mil-i-' t6i-h 'axi*h nM-rli-l after taking his car apart he was 

unable to put it together again (Ad 12/48:6) 
yiMde t jd'' > -i t ' > ye- ndxonnihgo xa- fidi-dzd after he had spat on them 

(ashes) he got busy pressing them(4) with them (EW 104 : 18) 

336 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.16.-12.19. 

12.16. A negative clause may express the idea which in English is 
temporal ; "before ..." would be in Navaho " . . . had not happened, 
had not had a chance to happen when . . . " : 

td- do* dasi-ltsihi, ni^oh yicyod before they saw me I ran out of sight; 
they-do-not-see-me out-of-sight I-ran (YM 159) 

'ei id* do- bi- yic&hi Uido-tolgo "*6£y Id that (cord) even before I step into 
it (basket) will surely break; that I-do-not-step into-it it-will-break- 
being it-is-thus to-be-sure (EW 120:4) 

dane'Zndi'gi' fa- do* yas bvh ndadzistiefdah those who died before they 
(had a chance to) roll in the snow: those -who -died they-had-not- 

12.17. In the following sentences several processes are combined 
bo express time : 

'oycdk? nd-xdid^'^ ncfbe-hd bidtb6 da-lq'igo nixo-lji'j five years ago the 

period during which the Navaho had many sheep ended; five years - 

past Navaho their-sheep being-many time-arrived-at-end (YM 238) 
'wdjf to- naxodo'tiago at that point when only a short time had passed 

(NT 52:24) 
dcfticq' ?izd'd$' y 'ade'-jtci'dg** Uad 'd'dfrcf' biji' 'ida-lne'go xodide'cji'j 

I don't know how long it was until there was a birth, (but) ever since 

time began names have been said (NT 292 : 6) 
koriigo nfi-'e-' thus it will have been said (NT 30 : 21) 
ni'itci-dji' 'axodji-jgocf' the time of childbirth having come (NT 36 : 17) 
'6i yfrni* ^d-dfy HJkd'hgo when that (remote future) time arrives 

(NT 324:6) 
*a'ke*d/j\ > be* noxo'tdnfrdj'tf y axo-lji*jgo the time having been set for it 

(ceremony) in the fall having arrived (NT 276 : 18) 
da^cf- nzahdjf dini nd-s neididjih (sales) may help the Navaho quite a 

bit; possibly to-a-distance Navaho forward they-move-cust. 

(NT 414:10) 

12.18. Navaho shares with other North American languages the 
nsistence on place. The final bound forms include a great many 
postpositions with explicit locative connotations. Initial bound 
orms are concerned mainly with specific designations of place 
rhich may merge into temporal meanings. Illustrative of locative 
leas, in addition to the examples already mentioned, are the 
ominal finals ~nr "belonging to a place," and -lie- "in place," and 
hie verbal prefix #o-place (5.33, 5.35a, 10.116.). Both may be used 
ogether as in the example kg'Keh noxonlti "he put him in the fire- 
lace; fire-place he-placed-animate-obj.-in-place" (NT 246: 14). 

12.19. Thus 

12.19. Another feature that Navaho has in common with other 
Torth American languages is the abundant use of "thus" and "so," 

characteristic well illustrated by independent words, bound forms, 
erbal prefixes, and demonstratives, whose meanings can often 
ardly be differentiated. Idiomatic Navaho cannot be achieved 
ithout them, but an examination of texts shows also that some 

12.19.-12.21. USAGE AND VOCABULARY 337 

narrators haVe a "thus and so" habit not nearly as exaggerated as 
in others. RM for example piled one such expression upon another, 
as compared with tid% Charlie Mitchell, Slim Curley, and others. 1 
The following sentences illustrate the expression of "thus, so" : 

'inda n6£otse > bitse* djo J6ad kogo- kote-go rwctdq-'go kotfrgo *akon then the 
tobacco pipe (stone) is so constructed thus being fashioned (decor- 
ated) thus being so it is (BS) 

tiidd 'dkolya- djo y akon exactly thus it is made so it is (BS) 

. . . 1$ 'akogo 'ar *ei 'akwi- djd *okon de'stfr* (offerings) were to be sure 
so that this here so it was observed (BS) 

'dkogo sqHso 'ei dv xani^yi, consequently Big Stars these this one on 
his(4) account (BS) 

€&• 'aihigi* 'ai-di 'akon gini fa- *ai 'akon *dni*go just the one that was 
that very one so prairiehawk just that way so speaking thus 
(making his sound) (BS) 

td* *&i di- gini djo 'okon di'di ndcddi btigo 'a-do* 'ai ginihigi- 'ani-go just 
that this prairiehawk so it was this very mountain lion being with 
him from there that one who was prairiehawk making his sound thus 

'akd- tcvj 'dda'fii* fd-dode'4 td- kodigi nxd bind-nd'l from now on firewood 
everything necessary for our sake do for her (WE) 

'dko do- 'eidi di-di dinni-dgo '6i fa- 'dfe 'asintsi'h do- Mi^ if so not that 
(but) this you had said those just so it is (blessings) you would have 
missed (NT 220:17) 

'eidi 'd-di k6U-go sidd- le nUi xo-t\-d^ that one over there being thus he 
lives customarily as soon as they are visible (NT 266 : 1 1 ) 

12.20-12.27. Number and Quantity 

12.20. The section on Numerals (9.13-9.22.) shows the use of 
independent words, suffixes, and numeral stems as verbal prefixes 
(adjectives) as well as finals (verbs). Here the more general ideas of 
number expressed by various processes will be summarized. 

12.21. We have seen that there are three grammatical numbers - 
singular, dual, and plural-of which plural may be considered as 
derived (from singular and dual) insofar as conjugation is concerned, 
because a slight prefix modification of dual for first and second 
persons and of singular for third and fourth persons forms the 
plural. From the vocabulary viewpoint, however, plural is just as 
primary as the other numbers. Navaho shares with many other 
North American languages the use of distinct stems for singular, 
dual, and plural: -g&'l "one person goes," -ac "two persons go," 
-hah "plural persons go;" -l-yol "one runs," -l-tce'l "two run," 
-djah "plural rim;" -da*l "one sits," -M "two sit," -tq, "plural sit." 
Moreover, the various stems expressing what in English would be 

he same idea as "go" or "sit" are not treated the same way 
jammatically. They seem to be in different morphological and 
emantic categories. 

1 Reichard 1944; Haile 1938; Sapir 1942 

838 KAVAHO GBAMMAR 12.22.-12.26. 

12.22. An interesting feature of verbs like "go" is that the dual 
and plural stems may be used in the singular to indicate a total, for 
instance, nil dvtfac "you will go with me; with-you I-shall-go-as-one- 
of-two" (cp. dvtac "we two will go"); xol ni'a-j "he led him(4); 
with-him he-arrived-as-one-of-two;" but xol nikai "they two led 
him(4); with-him they-two-arrived-as-more-than-two." 

12.23. Another way of expressing number is by the essential 
meaning of some stems, which include plurality of the subject or 

-ic lead, lead several on a string, string beads 

-l-dah persons move as a group, as an organization 

-nil plural separable objects move, move plural objects 

-joe parallel objects move, move parallel objects 

-164 a pair of objects moves, move a pair, one of a pair 

-loh loop one . . . , 

-Ids lead one on a string, lead one . . . (cp. YMG 44) 

Conceptually such stems have something in common with verbs 
like "go," "run," and "sit," but differ morphologically in that they 
are the same throughout the three numbers, that is, each stem is 
conjugated in singular, dual, and plural. Because the verbs differ so 
greatly in their connotations the Navaho often have great difficulty 
with English number. For instance, they conceive the stem -jah 
"hook, snare, interlock strands" as a plural, and have corresponding 
trouble with other stems. 

12.24. A phase of the verb form closely related to that of number 
and sometimes obscuring it, is the prefix and compounding of pre- 
fixes. This subject was discussed under the repetitives (and the 
prefix da-, any of which may denote a distributive (8.62-8.72.). 
These meanings must be ascertained in connection with the stem, 
which sometimes has a distributive or repetitive form. 

12.25. The prefix wa-here and there may also be considered as a 
distributive, which is in a sense a plural. For instance, a stem 
lenoting a single object, such as sq?q "round object is in position" 
may have a plural na*z*q, "there are round objects here and there" 
TM 7-8); siz\ "he is standing," na % z{ "they are standing about, 
>hey are standing here and there." 

12.26. Meanings of prefixes may be learned from the changes that 
;ake place in singular and plural forms. For example, m-uniform in 
uhe transitive has regular plural forms (with da-plural), from which 
tact I conclude that a close relation exists between the prefix ni- 
uniform and the object. On the other hand, verbs with prefix ni- 
uniform in the singular intransitive take prolongative plurals. It 
must be then that such verbs refer to motion rather than to persons 
>r things (10.98a.). 

2.27.-12.29. USAGE AND VOCABTTkARY 339 

12.27* Mass, volume, or amount is expressed in several ways. The 
jem -\'l has to do with measuring, of volume or length, as well as 
E extent or mass. The compounds of this stem are very interesting, 
>r instance, ne'Vq "maximum number, quantity, amount;" biniVq 
he measures up to it." Another stem -Iqsl {-lq>'l), conjugated in the 
lural only, expresses a large number or quantity (cp. ne-V&di "how 
tany times [NT 396:13]; ne-fy yisty "many days" [NT 78:18]). 
he expression to* 'axayoi* "many, a large number, large amount, 
lot" (YM 208) is very common. 

12.28-12.60. Verbs 
12.28-12.43. Type Verbs 

12.28. In this work repeated references have been made to the 
jrpe verbs (abbreviated T in formulas). Since they are so basic, and 
ince the dictionary planned is not available, these verbs will be 
xemplified with their fundamental compounds. Forms of these 
idispensable verbs will be discussed for each one in order. We have 
sen that the static forms are descriptive ; they indicate the presence 
r state of an object when often in English a noun with "is" or "are" 
rould be used. Although a generalized meaning can be arrived at 
yr each one, it is far from comprehensive or literal. Like all cate- 
;ories, the inclusion of an object, material, or substance may depend 
>n the point of view and cannot always be predicted. Therefore a 
let of objects, either named or implied, in any usage of the stem 
rill be given after the principal parts of the particular verb. 

Next a list of nouns, often built on a static form of the stem, will 
>e given. The nouns will be followed by formulas for the prefix com- 
pounds with the meanings that apply to the several stems, and they 
n turn will be followed by formulas that apply to the specific stem 
inder discussion with its particular meaning. 

The most generalized of these stems, the one entering into the 
argest number of compounds, and forming the most abstract mean- 
ngs is -d*l "one round or convenient object is, moves." The 
'ormulas for compounds with this stem establish the pattern for 
lucceeding stems, but since -'d'l refers to only one object as com- 
pared with plural objects, . substance, material, etc., some of the 
iundamental formulas will appear first with other stems. 


-'d'l ~*ah -'ah - y d*h\ -'# sa'q, round, convenient obj. lies, is; 
(opt.) -'ahX -'a-hf • d-' moves 


Nouns used with -'d'l: bandoleer (EW 110:14), barrel, bottle, 
bowl, bread, candy and cigarettes in package (compactness empha- 

28 AeicfaMd 

340 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 12.29. 

sized), hat, house (kin and xoyan), irascibility, keg, knife (thought of 
as stone), meat in one piece, melon, news, rock, scalp (EW 196: 10), 
silver dollar, stone. 

If -d'l is used with "moccasins," they are dried up and shapeless 
(cp. -M*l 12.42.). 

Nouns compounded with ~d'l\ 

'anitti d€dni (< di'g-i) halter; that-round-obj.-that-lies over-the-face 
'azi** sa'dni (< 8i-*$-i) bridle bit; that-which-lies-(in)-mouth (YME 8) 
be^edizi bd dahsa'dni spindle whorl; that-which-lies-suspended-for- 

6e* xaz'q rule, code, regulation, law (spec.) 
be- xaz^d'Yii- (< xaz'fai*) the law, government (gen.) 
to bitty-* 'az'^ structure in a channel to check water 
-tci'dah 'az'4 adenoid; round-obj.-iies-along-nasal-fold 
nd'dlkadgo xdla' bq-h na-z'dnigi* thimble; that-which-lies-on-one's(4)- 

finger- (for) -cust. -sewing (YME 90) 
xaz'q, fact, rule, law 
xwi-yis^q laws frequently made 
tsi'-'d-l pillow; head-support (AB) 
tU xona-'di*, tli xona^ei moon; the-particular-supernatural-one-that- 


The following are general compounds used with -d'l and other 
type verbs (T): 

'a-beyond-'a-i. . .-T (fut., inc., 2/i-pf.) move ... in or out of sight 
(YM 108). When used with -'d-l this compound refers to the move- 
ment of the sun, hence to the time of day. 
Oa- 'a-beyond-ni-start for . . . ~T (inc., m-pf.) lend . . . to . . . (YM 6) 
'ada 'a-beyond. . . -T (inc., m-pf.) . . . falls from hand 
'a-beyond-nd* -again- 'a-i-m-start for... -I 1 (inc., m-pf.) move ... back 

beyond, move another . . . back beyond, move . . . again 
'a-beyond-a? . . ,~T (inc. m-pf.) load . . ., rep. carry . . . beyond; 

drink a lot, "be loaded" 
' alnd-(nd-) . . . T inc., ni-pf.) change positions of . . , (YM 8) 
*alnd*-(nd-) . . . T (inc., ni-pf.) carry . . . back and forth (YM 8) 
'altia ru-start for-(nd-) ... T (inc., ni-pf.) divide, share. If the stem 
is -''d-l the division is in two, if the stem refers to plural objects, 
a substance, or a mass, the division may be in two or several 

'altid a? -(nd-). . .-T (inc. m-pf.) separate . . . one by one 

Oa- m-start for. . . -T (inc., ni-pf.) give ... to ... (YM 5) 

Od Oa* m-start for. . . -T (inc., m-pf.) give . . . to . . . for benefit of . . . 

Odn-(< nd-back)tfi-start from cess.. . ,-T (inc. cess., pf. cess.) fetch . . . 

for . . . , bring — for benefit of . . . (cp. ndi-cess. . . . T "pick up") 
Oqr* dah-suspended-si--pf.. . ,-T (stat.) ... is fastened, pinned on . . . 

(EW 192:22) 
'#• di-ni-get stuck starting for. . . T (inc. m-pf.) open door 
Oqh ni-end-m" -start for. . . -T (inc., m-pf.) pawn . . . , put ... in pawn 
Vi- (< 'a-beyond-' -T (cont., 2/t-pf.,) load or un- 
load . . , one by one 
Oi- (< 0-nd-against)'a-i-(nd-)against. . .-T (cont.) rub . . . with . . . 
Oi-(< 0-nd-against)nd-cess. . . .-T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) add ... to ... 


dahi-di-. . . -T (pres.) hang downward (as carcass on a hook) 
dahi-di-emit cess.. . .-T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. dahi-di-di-) hang . . . up. 

See also dahsi-haxm . . . ~T 
rfaft--forth-d^-sta'*c from cess. ...-T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. dah-di-di-) 

start off with . . ., start off carrying, holding . . . (YM 5) 
eto/i-suspended-t/t-prog. . . .-T (prog., pres., yi-pf.) hold . . . up, hold . . . 

da(k)-xi-Tep.a,c.-yi-Tep.asp -T (prog., pres., yi~p£.) have . . . ready, 

handy, be prepared for an emergency 
do^-suspended-st-harm . . . T (inc., si-pi.) set, place ... up (as on a 

shelf) (YM 8) 
da/a-suspended-st-pf. . . .-T (stat.) ... is up on ..., suspended (NT 

Odd'h dini-prol -T (fut., cont., si-pf.) cork, cover put lid on, cork 

in ; move . . . meeting ... 
Odd-h m-start for . . . -T (inc., ni-pf.) meet . . . while carrying . . . 
di-start from. . . -T (inc., si-pf.) (fut. di-di-) take . . . , start moving . . . 

(YM 5) 
cft-fire-d^-start from. . ,-T (inc., yi-pf.) (fut. di-di~di-) put . . . into the 

fire (YM 8); with -djah "build, start fire" (YM 105) 
to* siUisgo Oa- m-start for. . . -T (inc., m-pf.) give . , . to . . . expecting 

no return; just friendship-being give . . . (RH) 
/wj-about. . .-T (pres., si-pf.) carry . . . about (YM 6); have . . ., own 

. . . (not necessarily with one) ; play shinny 
/^-down-'a-beyond-di-start from cess -T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. 

ndi'ti-) take . . . down off (as off shelf, peg, branch) 
na- aside 'a-beyond. . . -T (inc., yi-pf.) knock . . . over (YM 78) 
w-(< nd-up)di-start from cess....-T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. n-di-di~) 

pick up, lift; choose . . . ; separate surfaces of . . . (YM 5) 
m-start for . . . -T (inc., m-pf.) bring . . . , start . . . for, arrive with . . . 

(YM 5) 
ni-end-di-ce&s. . . . -T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) take off. . . (as something worn 

on body) (EW 110:14) 
m-end-m-start for. . . -T (inc., m-pf.) put, set, place . . . down (YM 5) 
ni* ground m-end-m-start for. . . -T (inc., m-pf.) put, set, place ... on 

ground, floor (YM 5) . . . -T (cont., s^-pf.) load . . . , move ... to end rep. 
yi-prog. . . . -T (prog.) carry . . . , move along carrying . . . (YM 5) 
yisdd-(<i yisdd-asbfety-nistaxt for). . .-T (inc., yi-pf.) save, take ... to 

safety (YM 7) 
yd'-owt of sight-'a-beyond. . .-T 7 (inc., yi-pf.) . . . moves out of sight, 

lose . . . (YM 6) 
0#a-over cess.. . .-T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) cover . . . with . . . (YM 108) 
xo-out. . . -T (inc., si-pf.) move . . . out, up out 
xa-oxxt-dini-pvo\. . . .-T (inc., si-pf.) (fut. xa-di-dini-) carry . . . too far 

xacfe m-end-m-start for . . ,-T (inc., m-pf.) put . . . away, store. . ., 

preserve . . . (YM 5) 
xd-(<L aja-out-nd-back) 'd-beyond-(nd-). . . T (inc., yi-pf.) take . . . out 

of pawn (YM 8) 
Oya m-start for. . .-T (inc., m-pf.) take . . . away from ... by force 

si-pf. . . . -T (stat.) ... is, lies 
<vi-pf. . . . -l-T (stat.) have . . . , keep . . . ready 
dzUtdd-ni-start for-(nd-) . . . -T (inc., m'-pf.) take . . . out, off fire, water. 

With -yd-l "catch large quantities offish" (YM 7) 


342 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.29. 

-Idtte* ...-T (inc.cess., pf.cess.) hand ... to . .., move... to place 

in . . . 's hand 
01 'alta- nd-circle. . .-T (inc., si-[nd-]pf.) mix . . . With -ka-d "spread" 

the meaning is "trees have interlocking crowns" (SCE) 

The following compounds are used with -a'l only. With the 
subject prefix 'a-some obj., which may be combined with other 
prefixes, -fcl refers to "sun moves, time is:" 

'a-i. . . - y d-l (prog., fut., pres., st-pf.) sun moves, it is day 
'a-beyond-'a-i. . . -V& (inc., yt-pf.) sun moves beyond, sun sets 
'aJni-center-'a-beyond-'a-i. . . -'a*fr (inc., yi-pf.) it is noon; sun-moves- 
to-center (YM 2) 
da/i-forth-'a-i-di-cess.. . . -'a*£ (fut., inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. daKfido--) 

be mid -morning (YM 1) 
ya* 'a-i-di-start from. . . -'d*Z (fut., inc., si-pf.) (fut. ya- 7 adidi-) be mid- 
afternoon, from mid-afternoon to sunset (YM 2) 
:ca-out-'a-i. . . -'d-l (fut., inc., yi-pf.) sun rises (YM 1) 

#a-(< #a-out-nd-cycle)m-start for cess -'d-h (inc.cess,, pf.cess.) set 

a day, date (EW 220:3) 
#d-(< #a-out-nd-cycle)m-end-#o-things. . .-'d-h (inc.) set date for be- 
ginning of ceremony (EW 220:2) 
#d-(< #a-out-nd-cycle)xo-things. . . -*d7t (inc.) agree upon a time, day, 
set a date (EW 220:2) 

Other idioms based on -'d'l are : 

Oo-(< O-a-) dt-emit-'a-i-tw-get stuck. . . -'a-fc (inc., wt-pf.) (fut. Oa-di^ti-) 

permit . . . to . . . (YM 3) 
J ay6-' Oini s*-pf. ...-'$ (stat.) be irritable, cranky, irascible (YM 3) 
Oa- di-ni-get stuck. . . -'a-ft (inc., rn-pf.) (fut. Oa- di-di-) forgive ..., 

turn . . . over to. . . , cancel obligation (YM 2) 
Od si-harm-xo-things-si-'pf, . . .-'^ (stat.) there's a chance for . . ., ... 

has a chance (FH) 
Oq- rfa-misfortune-a?o-things-si-pf. . . .-'$ (stat.) be ill, sick, afflicted 

(YM 9, YME 78) 
Oi^ yini- 1 . . . ^a-h (pres.) be discontented 
££-(< O-nd-against)'a-i-(nd-) against. . . -dh (pres.) dip food, "dunk," 

pass bread through liquid ; move something against — 
Oi-(<i 0-nd-agamst)V»-beyond-#o-things-yt-rep.asp.. . .-'a*ft (pres.) (3 

only) emulate . . . , try to be like . . . 
da-xo-place. . .~'a m h (pres.) make blanket design 
da-#o-a^ . . . -'a-h (inc.) try to make up one's mind to 

do something desperate, serious 
td-di-st&Tt from...-*a*& (inc., si-pf.) misinterpret; round-obj.- is-out- 

to* Oa* di-ni-get stuck. . . -'a-h (inc., nt-pf.) give in in a fight (YM 3) 
na'fiic Oa' di-ni-get stuck. . . -*o-ft (inc., ni-pf.) hire (YM 3) 
nd-8 xo-things-dr-nvget stuck. . . - J a*h (inc., m-pf.) get a habit (FH) 
i/o-tilt-yt-cess. . . . -VA (inc.cess., pf.cess.) empty round obj . ; tilt round 

yo^a-di-st&rt from...-'a*A (inc., yi-pf.) (fut. yo^adi-di-) give up..., 

quit . . . (YM 3) 
Ohiyah Oa' #a-out. . . -'a-h (inc., si-pf.) take . . . 's land away from . . . 

(YM 3) 
Otti dtrn-get stuck . . .-'d-Zt (inc., ra-pf.) take off lid, take cork out; 

with 'd-self "take off, put on hat" (YM 2) 

12.29.-12.31. USAGE AND VOCABULARY 343 

OUi- xo-di-cem.. . .-'a-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. OUi di-di-) accuse . . . 

xanV di-start from . . . - y d-h (inc., si-pf.) carry news 

xani* yah'a-na-cem.. . .-'a-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) bring news back in 

(EW 140:7) 
#o-things . . . -"a (si-pf.) set holy things in motion 
xo-things-di-emit. . .-'d-h (pres., 2/i-pf.) start to speak; give a piece of 

one's mind 
Ozb* di-. . .-'a-h (inc., si-pf.) (fut. Ozi-' di-di-) plot against . . . (YM 1) 
Otid dini-get stuck. . .-'a-k (inc., m-pf.) (fut. OtSd di-di-) prohibit . . . 

from (YM 3) 
tdi-out-da- . . . - y $-l (fut., pres., si-pf.) put into words, speak out (NT 

tdi-ni-st&Tt for-(nd-) . . . -'a-h (inc., m-pf.) explain (WE) 
t6i-out-ni-end-ni-(nd~). . .-l-'4 (pf.) stick one's head out (and keep 

it out) 
£d$-out-#o-thing8-2/£-rep.asp.. . . -*a*/t (inc., si-pf.) tell a story, say (the 

same thing), predict (NT 148:20, 25) 
O^di-dfo-xo-things-yi-rep.asp -a*h (inc., si-pf.) tell to. . ., say to . . . 

(NT 182:21) 
01 idi-ni-start for-(n<$-). . .-'«*& (inc., m-pf.) answer ..., inform ..., 

tell to . . . 


-t&l -t&'h -t6 -te'h -t\ si-tj animal, animate obj . is, moves 
(opt.) -te' 

Nouns used with some form of -t&'t: adenoids, animal, animal 
tracks, baby, corpse, insects, persons 

Nouns compounded with ~te m l : 

'awfr' yi^ nitihi crib; that-in-which-baby-is-laid (YME 21) 

*ayd'ddiyo-U6-l bragging, self-assertion 

'dtci'cfah 'aztf adenoid ; something-living-lies-in -nasal-fold 

bik&s dah'anitihi bed, bedstead; that-on-which-someone-lies (YME 7) 

dahit(hi hummingbird 

di-yi* siivni- babyboard, cradleboard; this-particular-one-in-which-it- 

lies (NT 280:3) 
le* 'elte-h interment; something-is-caused-to-lie-in-ground (YME 46) 

Verbs compounded with -te'l: 

Oi* si-pf.. . ,-t{ (stat.) have — garment on; be completely devoted to 

. . . , be all wrapped up in . . . ; in-it-one-lies 

16 dah-ni-uni.-si-pf -t\ water rushes forth (pf.) (NT 106: 18) 

na-ltso-s OUi ni-end . . . -te-h (inc., ni-pf.) take . . . 's picture (YM 189) 
ni-end-ni-inc. . : . -l-te-h (inc., ni-pf.) promise ... to; put-down-a-live- 

obj. (NT 376:22) 
Ich . . . -l-te'h (pres., yi-pf.) inter, bury a corpse (YM 189) 


-fyl -tf*h -tin 1 -tph -t4 8%-td long, slender, rigid, obj . is, 
(opt.) -t\h -t\-h] -t^ moves 

Nouns used with forms of -tf'l: basket, cornear, dipper, gun, log, 
offering, one cigarette, prayerstick, snow crust, stick, 

Nouns compounded with -tf'l; 

344 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.31.-12.32. 

"did aitdni headband; that-stiff-obj.-lies-(on)-forehead 

'aze- y bidd-ditj-h aspergill (cer.) 

'azd-' dd-tdni horse collar ; stiff -obj.-which-hangs-against-neck (YME 18) 

'dlnd dah'aztq, cross; one-stiff-obj.-lies-across 

*ddah sitd-n upper loom beam 

'dsa- 9 ditdni Dutch oven (YME 28) 

'a£*$' xa-fyh removal of one rib (AB 33) 

'd-h sitd-n lower loom beam 

fee* \* ^ditfhi key: that-long-obj.-by-means-of-which-there-is-opening 

(YME 47) 
dahyi-td (YME 21), dahsitd (RT) crescent moon, first quarter 
Odd-h gona,' dahsitdnigi- yoke; the-long-obj . -that-lies-in-front -hanging- 

dd- ditj stiff door, gate, bar: long-obj. -lies-in-front 

dd- nditfhi wooden gate; long-obj. -that-lies-against-in-front (YME 36) 
td *datd-n extension of mask, tableta; some-long-obj.-that-lies-(on)- 

to bidd' ditihi small water gate; long-obj. -that-lies-in-front-of -water 
ikdi-t\ brush (cer.) 
yddiltd'n sky prayersticks (cer.) 
Oga-n bita' aitdni humerus ; long-obj . -that -lies -between -a^m- (parts) 

(YME 44) 
t8e*Hi ndstdni- ground squirrel (YME 83) 
tse ndtdni- petrified wood 

tain $it$ measure of length, yard, mile; stick lies (YME 55) 
tsi-* d4td-n spear (YME 82) 
Otai-yaatd-n neck ligament 
Odjd-d bita' aitd-n thigh bone, femur; it-lies-between-leg-(parts) (YME 

33, 90) 
l^ bizastd-n old-fashioned bridle bit; long-obj. -hes-(in)-horse's-mouth 

01 dakndtihi pin; that-which-cust.-lies-suspended-with. . . 

The following compounds are type forms not included among 
ompounds of -'a*2: 

Oa* di~. . . -t{'l (inc., si-pf.) take warp off warpframe 

'q* dim-get stuck. . . -T (especially with -tf-l f -hoi, -d/jah, and -14*1) (cont., 

nt-pf.) open door (YM 208) 
dd- 'a-beyond-dt-m-get stuck. . . -T (AB), dd-di-'a-ni-get stuck. . .T 

(YM 113, YME 17) close door 

The following compounds have been found with -tf'l only: 

OUa* OUal <2i-emit. . ,-tf-l (fut., pres., yi--pf.) aim arrow, place notch of 

arrow to bowstring (NT 152:25) 
Ofdtf Mai . . . -t\-l (fut., cont., y*-pf.) be ever ready, have arrow 

aimed toward . . . 
OtSf 01 Mai ^ . .-tf-l (fut., cont., yt-pf.) (obj. of 4 is English 

subject) have it in for . . ., be prepared for opposition 
01 daft-suspended. . . -l-tf-l (fut., pres., si-pf.) pin, pin together, pin up 


-nil -nil -ni*l -ni*l -nil si-nil there are separate objects, pi. 

(opt.) obj. move 

-n*U -nil -ni'l -rii-l -rlil yis-rlil separate pi. obj. are, are 



Nouns used with -nil: apples, bandoleers, bracelets, cookies, 
dollars, drops of liquid, fire (torches); fragments of flour, grain, 
herbs, meal, pollen, sand; melons, oranges, packages, pair of glasses, 
persons, sandpainting, wagons, warp. 

Nouns compounded with -nil : 

^atariinil alternation; pL-obj.-are-between (YME 3) 

'aUaninili' meal sprinklers in Fire Dance version of chants (cer.); the- 

'aM dahiriili, 7 aJ6i daheriili saddle blanket; those-which-hang-down-on- 

'azi-' di-nili (YME 40), 'azi-' di-nili tsinigi- (FF) hames: those-which- 

'adjdnil fringe, tassels; pi. -obj. -are- (along) -legs 
y atle*yah dalisinili singletree, whiff letree ; those-which-lie-suspended-in 

under-bottom (YME 79) 
V*' bil d-aknazniligi- manufactured buttons ; those-which-lie-suspended- 

here-and -there- (on) -garment 
'*•' sinil heald sticks (YME 41) 
bq- dahsinil ornamental tassels; those-which-lie-suspended-on-border 

bi-c sinil Winslow, Arizona; flints-lie (YME 98) 
toneinili- Water Sprinkler (god) (NT 174:24) 
to bitcq- tsin sinili irrigation gate; the-pieces-of-wood-that-lie-obstruct- 

naxa-snil feast given by man after "fooling around" with girl 
niba-l sinil camp; tents-are (YME 11) 
natte- sinili eye glasses, spectacles; those-which-lie-in-eye-place 

(YME 82) 
yaWiH^ni-li- policeman, sheriff; the-particular-one-who-rep.-moves- 

them-into-(jail) (YME 65) 
yisdd H-ni-li- savior; the-particular-one-who-niovcs-pL-(perH(>n3-to)- 

safety (YME 75) 
yi- sinil weaving sheds; pi. -obj. -lie-in 
tsi y aUi sinil stone weights (FF) 

tsi xaxani-ligi- quarry; the-place-out-of-which-stones-are-moved 
OdjU dicdjo-l bidane-zniligi- ventricle of heart (FF) 
Otcoctiod bqs sinil, or Otcoctto-l 'a* sinil ring of saddle cinch (FF) 

The following have been found only with -nil of the type verbs : 

"(Mi nd-up-dvstart from. . , -ni-l (inc., si-pf.) dig tunnels one above the 

other (EW 114:6) 
Oa* di-st&rt from. . . -ni-l (inc., *i-pf.) take warp from warpframe* 
'd-Belf-ya- -under 'a-beyond. . .-Hi'l (inc., yi-pf.) subjugate them*(YM 

167) (also with -td-l "subjugate one" YM 190) 
Oq-h tu-end-tti-start for. . . -ni-l (inc., m-pf.) put pi. obj. on (bandoleers, 

bracelets) (NT 270:6, EW 196:25) 
'i-'i-(< 'a-beyond-a^*'a-i). . .-ni'l (inc., £/*-pf.) dig, bore hole, 

burrow (YM 169) 
dahi-di-emit . . . -ni-l (pres., yi-pf.) hang up pieces of meat, hang jerky 

to dry 
e&-start from. . . -nil (mom., s^-pf.) sprinkle liquid, meal, pollen, sand 
na-about. . . -nil, (mom., si-pf.) sprinkle liquid, meal, pollen, sand here 

and there 

346 NAVAHO GBAMMAB 12.32.-12.33. 

na-aside ' -nil (fut., pres., si-pf.) knock over one 

by one (YM 167) 
Ondkd 'a-theme-m-start for. . ,-{nd-). . .-ni-l (inc., m-pf.) bore hole 

through ... (YM 169) 

i/a-tilt-2/i-cess -ni-l (inc.cess., pf.cess.) pour (emetic, mush) (WE) 

yah-'a-da-pl.-xo-pl&ce. . . -ni-l (inc., yi-pf.) put persons in jail 

OUi dctA-suspended-'a-theme. . . -ni-l (pres., si-pf.) saddle horse; suspend- 

pl.-obj.-on ... (YM169) 
xa-out-'a-beyond.. .-ni-l (inc., 2/i-pf., -si-pf.) dig out (EW 114:6, 

lid 04-(< 0-nd-against-wd-up) . . . -nil (mom., si [nd-] pf.) smoke pieces 

of meat (also with -'d-J "smoke one piece of meat" YM 168) 


-kal -ko? -kad -ka-d -ka-d si-ka-d there is a surface; surface 
(opt.) (opt.) -kad (mom.) moves, make a surface; 

spread (YM 111) 

Nouns used with -kal: blanket, buckskin, fabric, buffalo robe 

Nouns compounded with -kal : 

'axq- be'ekid nda-ka* series of dams, lakes; lakes-are-spread along-one- 

'alUi daxofika-d broad terraces ; flat-places-lie one-above-the-other 
dd'dilkal door curtain, blanket hung in doorway (YME 26) 
tdkd-" dahikali water buttercup, water lily; that-which-lies-spread-on- 

to bd tse yo'q-ka-d rubble spillway 

nariilkct'di sheepherder; one-who-causes-spreading-here-and there 
ndne-ska-di tortilla, Navaho bread ; that-which-is-spread-evenly-in- 

circle (YME 92, NT 78:29) 
ni'no-lka-d altar spread (cer.) 

xoc sika-di- prickly pear ; the-particular-cactus-that-spreads 
sika-d lining, spread (cer.) ; it-is-spread 
tsi bikd- dle*c tddo-kal palette; stone-on-which-paint-is-spread-with- 

tsi sika'd pavement ; stones form-surface (YME 62) 
tsj sika-d foliage of fallen tree : tree lies-spread 
Odje-kal deafness, ... is deaf; . . .'s ears-are-covered 
le-j be- xaxalka-di or le-j be- xalka-di spade, shovel; that-by-means-of- 

which-soil-is-spread-in-place (YME 78) 
tia-kal skirt; bottom-covered 

Verbs compounded with -kal : 

y axi-(< 'a#-together-nd-against)(rid-)against . . .-kad (pres., si-pf.) clap 

hands; spread-against-each-other (YM 111) 
'd-AJi-m-uniform. . . -l-ka-d (pres., si-pf.) drive off attackers (YM 113) 
Oa* na-about-oro-things. . .-ka-d (pres., yi-pf.) sigh, be disappointed 

(YM 112) 
d^-start from. . . -ka*d (inc., si-pf.) spread fingers 
no-about-ni-uniform . . . -l-kal (prog., fut., pres., si-pf.) herd animals, 

sow, broadcast seeds; cause-spreading-about-uniformly (YM 113) 
nd-against-di-cess. . . , -ka*d (inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. n-di-di-) slap (cp. 


12.33.-12.35. USAGE AHD VOCABULARY 347 

nd-back-dini-prol -l-kal (inc., ^-pf.) herd animals back (YM 112) 

m-uniform. . . 4-kal (prog.) herd animals 

xi-dzi'&,wa,y-di'cem -ka-d (inc. cess., pf.cess.) slap, box (as ears) 

dzi-ni-st&Tt for. . . -ka-d (inc., m-pf.) slap . . . 

tsistta dini-prol 4-kal (fut.) push pi. into corner, "stump them" 

(also with -1-tcH) (YM 33-4, 113) 
tsistia m-uniform. . .4-ka-d (pres., si-pf.) corner, "stump pi. persons'* 

(YM 113) 
tdi-out-dini-prol -l-ka-d (inc., m-pf.) herd animals out (cp. YM 112) 


-kd-l -kd-h -kdh -kd-h -hj> si-foj, contained substance is, 
(opt.) moves (may refer tocontainer 

or substance contained, but 
the relation between the two 
is preserved) 

Nouns used with -kd'l: dry substances in container as bread, 
cakes, cheese, rolls, medicine (herbal), meal, salt, sugar in bowl, or 
on plate, in box or trunk; liquids in container (as in bottle, bucket, 
water keg, etc.) 

Nouns compounded with -k&'l\ 

\ttUi xonk$ terraced irrigation 

'dsa-* to be* na-kdhi bucket, pail; that-in-which-water-is-oarried 

(YME 12) 
to daiisikd Water-vessel-hangs (place name) 
to dahsikdni small reservoir 
to sikol pond, pool 
ydyd xokq skyhole (myth.) 


-yi-l -yi-h -yS-h -ye-h -yf &i-y\ load is, moves; packed or con- 
(opt.) solidated material is, moves 

Nouns used with -yfrl: entrails, load, nasal mucus 
Nouns compounded with ~yfcl\ 

'aze*' nayihi herbalist; one-who-possesses-(organized-knowledge-of)- 

dilyihi Pleiades (constellation) 
dilyihi lead (metal) (YME 49) 
to dahsiyi large body of water, large reservoir 
to siyi water in natural confines 
na'lyihi load, pack, property, goods, merchandise 
nadye'he' bd xo-yan store; house-for-benefit-of -property 
na*ly4h4 yd siddhi trader, storekeeper, clerk ; one-who -remains-in- 

charge-of -goods 
na-ltso'8 nei-yihi mail carrier; one-who-rep.-carries-letters-about 
z4' diyini cape 

zfr dily4 necktie, medicine collar (cer.) 
tadsUeh, bikd^ dahna-zyinigi- mattress; that-load-which-lies-here-and- 

there-on-bed (YME 54) 
le*j 'aki siyini sandbag, weight (FF) 
lij be* dahsiyinigi- bladder (YME 9) 
l\s ncfay&hi saddle horse (YME 74) 

348 NAVAHO GRAMMAR • 12.36.-l2.38 


-tsos -tsos -tso*s -tsd'8 -tso-z\ si-l-tso'z} fabriclike obj. is, 
(opt.) -tso-z) si-l-tso-z) moves 

Nouns used with -tsos: any substance in bag, sack, or paper 
container; book, fabric, garment, paper, skirt 

Nouns compounded with -tsos : 

y i-ct6id xacte' ninaltso-s suspension of uterus (AB 32) 

dahnayizi- bike* diltso-si pouch of bandoleer (FF) 

Oti-l silts6-z apron; fabric-is-(on)-abdomen (YME 4) 

to siltsd'Z water lies spread (as after a rain) 

nadtso-8 book, letter, paper, ticket, certificate, permit (YME 10) 

nadtso'S bikdgi, or na-ltso'S biKtetiH book cover 

nadtso'S daknayol corrugated paper (DD) 

z4- dfrltso-z scarf (YME 58) 

tie-tso-z Kotex (YME 48) 

tle-stso-z man's breechcloth (YME 11) 

Verbs compounded with -tsos : 

7/a-down-rfm^-get stuck. . .-l-tso-s (cont.) sew blanket down while 

weaving it 
. . . xa-out-di-eess. . . .-l-tso-s (inc.cess., pf.cess.) take off garment (as 

shirt or dress) 


-joe -joe -jo-c -jo-c -jo'j ci-jo'j parallel obj. lie, move; make 

(opt.) bridge; stretch legs out in 

front; move splitting, split; 

pour in sheets; slide, slip (as 

sand, small hard obj.) 

Nouns compounded with -joe: 

Ota-joc femur, thigh bone 

na J ajo-c poles or logs lying in order 

nariijo-j, or nanijo-ji bridge, span; Gallup, New Mexico 

nd-se- tiin 'alMini-jo-j longitudinal fracture (AB 35) 

Verbs compounded with -joe : 

V»-beyond-«4* -again- zo-place. . .-jo-c (inc., wt-pf.) sand pours in again; 

slides, slips back 
di-joc (stat.) easily split 

ni~ . . . -jo-j (ni-stat.) combination of parallel obj. 
#{-(< #t-over-nd-against)dvemit-(na-)against. . .-jo-c (pres., ai-pf.) 

stretch out, extend legs (in sitting position) (YM 239) 


-jol -jo y -jo-d -jo-d -jd'd ci-jd-d there is bulky obj., bulky obj. 

(opt.) moves 

-col -co* -co-d -co-d -c6-d yi-co-d drag, move bulky obj. over 

(opt.) surface 

12.38.-12.40. USAGE AND VOCABULARY 349 

Nouns compounded with -jol : 

'aUi na-ljo-di harrow ; that-which-is-caused-to-drag-about-over-some- 

thing (YME 41) 
V-' na-ljo-di- gown (worn by priests and choir singers) 
V-' na-co-di- minister, priest; one-who-drags-garment 
tain na-ljo-di' sled (YME 79) 

Verbs compounded with -jol: 

m-start for. . .~jo-d (inc., m-pf.) weather starts to clear, clouds move 

slowly (YM 239) 
^d*Vnd-back-#o-place-(n-a-)back. . .-l-jol (inc., t/t-pf.) weather clears 



•djah -djah -dje-h -dji-k -dj4-' ci-dje-' pi. obj. are, lie, move 
(opt.) -dje-h (cp. -djah pi. persons 

move, run) 

Nouns used with -djah: branches, cord (refers to strands), fire- 

Nouns compounded with -djah : 

*at6i ndidUdje'-' fire for ceremonial sweatbath 

''at&j? d4-dildjah fire-making with drill (cer.) 

bizS- J nda'adjah meal -sprinkling of sandpainting rite (cer.) ; pl.-obj.-are- 

didoldji- ' fire-making 
kicdji-' hidden ball, moccasin game (FF) 
ts4 da-cdje-' lower millstone (YME 55) 

Verbs compounded with -djah: 

rft-burn-^-start from. . . -l-dje-h (pres., #i-pf.) (fat. di-di-di-) make, lay, 

build fire (YM 105, EW 102: 12) 
m-end-m-start for. . . •l-dje'-h (inc., nt-pf.) warp is strung 


•djih -djih -dja-h -djd-h -dja-' ci-dja-^ granular mass is, 

(opt.) moves; there is a pile; 

lay wood in cord 

The stem -djih is used with many of the same nouns given for 
-nil ("pi. separate obj. lie, move" 12.32.). The difference is some- 
times indistinguishable, but it seems that -nil emphasizes the 
separateness of the objects, whereas -djih refers to mass. 

Nouns used with -djih: arrows (EW 218:15), ashes, bottles, 
buckskins, bugs, bundles, cookies, firewood, flour, gall (NT 318:25); 
jerky, marbles, oranges, package of candy in cellophane, peanuts, 
pebbles, puppies, sand, seeds, shot, songs, yucca leaves 

Nouns compounded with -djih: 

be- lie-tq,- be- da'adja-h the songs with which prayersticks are charged 
(cer.) (AB) 

350 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.40.-12.42. 

dabiyi'n 'axd' dadidja-hgo songs arranged in orderly groups 

dajndja-Vi gone* sleeping cars; the-room-in-which-people-lie-down (DD) 

ci-dja^ song set 

sin bq-h dahcidja-H branch songs (cer.) 

sin bina- ndja-H- branch songs (cer.) 

Verbs compounded with -djih : 

*dlah rid-. . . -d?V (si-pf.) people assemble 

Oi-(< 0-nd-against)(nd-)against . . .-dja-h (pres., yi-pf.) rub with . . . 

(as sand) . ,-dja-h (pres., si-pi.) apply . . . (as meal, sand) 
rw-(< na-about) . . . -dja-h (pres., si-pi.) gather wood one stick 

at a time 
01 #a-out-:ro-place. . .-djd-h (inc., *i-pf.) jerk people out like sacks of 

flour (pun) 


-djol -djol -djo-l -djo-l -djo-l ci-djo-l fluffy, bunchy, non-com- 
-djd'l pact substance is, moves ; 

(opt.) move as fluffy mass; 

become steam, vapor; 


Nouns used with -djol: brush, cloud, hay, smoke, tangled cord, 

Nouns compounded with -djol : 

'add-dildjoli herbs used to seal prayersticks (cer.) 
to bitty* 'ajdjo-li brush diversion (irrigation) 
tdcdje'h bidddindjo-l herbs used as stopper of water vessel 
nidjot yarn being wound into a ball 

On}-' b6-ldjoli powderpuff; that-which-is-caused-to-fluff-against-face 
yas dah'o'djod snowdrift 
Ozol dahdidjo-l Adam's apple; larynx 
Idtah 'adidjo-li flax (YME 34) 
ladjic bildtah dadidjo-ligi- boxing glove (FF) 

tiok be na-ldjo-li- pitchfork ; the-particular-one-by-means-of-which- 
hay-is-moved-about (YME 41) 

Verbs compounded with -djol : 

dak^a-di-cess.. . .-djo-l (inc.cess., pf.cess.) steam up, steam becomes 

di-ni-get stuck . . . -djo-l ( be round like a ball, stocky, "chunky*' 

(YM 108) 
ira-out-'a-beyond. . .-djo-l (inc., yi-pf.) (smoke) moves out, rises (NT 



-U-l -le -U \ -li- -Id si-Id long, flexible obj . is, moves ; pair is, 
(opt.) -U- J -14, moves 

Nouns used with -IH: belt, cable, death (EW 208:9), feather, 
iredrill (WE), flexible branch, lightning, lightning arrow (EW 96 : 9), 
lecklace, oesophagus (EW 210:11), offerings, prayersticks, rain- 

1 2.42.-12.44. usage and vocabulary 351 

bow, rope, sapling, snake, strip of bark, strand of hair; sunbeam; 
pair of doors, moccasins, shoes, stars, towcards 

Nouns compounded with -le r l: 

't-* sildi', or Oyi' sildi- internal organs of chest and abdomen; the- 

particular- ones -that-lie -ropelike- within 
Odj&'d 'alMi dahsild-go indifference, unconcern, sulkiness, lack of 

cooperation; one-leg-hangs-ropelike-over-the-other (WE) 

Verbs compounded with -Wl\ 

y axq-h m-cess.. . .-16 (inc.cess., pf.cess.) fold fabriclike obj. (as blanket) 

(YM 127) 
di'h . . . -te'l (fut., pres., yi-~pf*) roll a cigarette (YM 128) 
na-xi- . . .-Id (m-pf.) (pollen) encircled his mouth (cer.) (EW 208 :4) 
nd-'a-di-cess. . . . -16-1 (fut., inc.cess., pf.cess.) accept an offering, pick up 

... (NT 176:9) 
a;o-na-circle. . .-Id (si-pf.) move prayerstick sunwise (NT 186:11) 


-tloh -tloh -th'h -tM*h -tli* y si-tU^ be amorphous, mushy, 

(opt.) -tlch slimy, damp, indetermi- 

nate ; mushy, indeterminate 
substance moves 

Nouns used with -tloh: mush, nasal mucus, old hat or wornout 
obj., pitch. 

Nouns compounded with -tloh : 

J aze* J 'etlohi liniment (YM 51, AB 22) 

'aas^*' xaxatle-h trench mouth; there-is-slimy-condition-of -mouth 

(AB 34) 
, o-ldj6-' bind'dstU-' moon halo (YME 72) 
na'ath'h impetigo contagioso ; it-is-slimy (AB 19) 
nd'dltle-h humidification (YME 44) 
tsi'isiU^ spinach 
djox&na-^i bind* dstlfr' sun halo (YME 72) 

Verb compounded with -tloh : 

0n6'ectil xa-ni-. . t -tli-h (inc., m-pf.) blow nose; nasal mucus-starts-to- 

12.44. Verbs of Force and Speed 

12.44. A number of verb stems refer to swift, sudden, vigorous or 
forceful motion. These will be abbreviated as F since all may be 
used with the same prefixes. With them forms meaning "drop, fall, 
hit, throw, hurl" and the like are compounded. A few are the same 
stems as those of the type (T) stems ; most of them are different, and 
of course, this class of stems includes some for which the type stems 
have no corresponding forms. Both are given below: 




Stems of force (F) 



stems (T) 



hit with 


Fabriclike obj. 

-Vrf 1 

-tS08 J 

-'al 1 



Group of obj. 




Granular mass 



Long, slender, flexible 





Long, slender, rigid obj . 




Small, round obj. 




Person, large animal 



Spread obj. 




Contained substance 



Pouchlike obj. 




Clublike obj. 





Volume of liquid 


Move of own weight 



Bunchy substance 






Animate obj. 



Mushy substance 





Plural obj. 


( -nil 




Twisting obj. 


The prefix compounds for these stems are : 

'a-beyond. . . -l-F throw. . . 
'adah down 'a-beyond. . . -F 
na-down . . . -F drop . . . 
-l&Ue* xa-out. . . -F ... falls from hand 
Forms with some of the stems : 

Oa' dini-pToL . . . -dah (fut., 

(NT 160:7) 
Oq> m-end-m-start for. . . -dah (fut., inc. ni-pf.) 

on . .. (NT 160:8) 
Oq- xa- . . . -l-dah (fut., inc., m-pf.) fasten side strings to loom (in setting 

up warp on loom) 


^m ha^ 
inc.cess., pf.cess.) garment slips off . . . 

garments fall into place 

12.45-12.46a. Verbs of Animated Motion 

12.45. Verbs of "animated motion" include words indispensable 
to elementary speech such as "go, run, chase," and the like. "Go" 
and "run" have entirely different stems in singular, dual, and plural. 
These stems may have "transitive" forms, that is, -Z-, -d-, and -l- 
forms. Some stems, as -dah "orderly group of persons, separate 
objects," and -djah "plural persons, things move," overlap the class 
we have considered as type (T) stems and stems of force (F). More- 
over, the singular stem for "go" has phonetic irregularities not 
found in any other verb — the first and second singular subject pro- 
nouns assimilate to the stem initial (8.95.), which is not stable in the 

12.45.-12.46. USAGE AND VOCABULARY 353 

principal parts. Many idioms are formed on these stems, which of 
course are also compounded with the ordinary prefixes with literal 
meanings. The idioms only will be noted here. 

12,46. The following stems for "go" are compounded with the 
same prefixes, but it must be remembered that the duals and plurals 
are not ordinarily found in the singular, although there are some 
exceptions. The "passive" -d- and -Z-stems are listed here also, and 
indicated in the formulas, when the idiom is based on the passive 
stem only. In the formulas the stem may be indicated as "go" or 
"run" meaning that any of the three — singular, dual, or plural — 
may be used. 

The following are the stems for "person goes" with their principal 
parts, passives, and general meanings : 


- y ac 





4d-j j 

two persons go; two 
motions take place ; there 
are two developments 







-yd* (opt.) 1 

1 one person 






■dza' (apt.) J S° es 











pl. persons go, move 

persons or objects move 
as an ordeily group 
clean, clear, wipe off; 
remove pl. obj. from 

Nouns compounded with the above stems 


01 na- 

*a-c man's 


cross cousin (mot 

her's brother's daughter, 

father's sister's daughter) ; with . . . two-persons-go-about (cp. and 
distinguish 01 nd y ac "two persons cust. go about," a form that means 
"a man and woman are going together, are having a sexual relation- 
y axe* na-ydi- assistant to chanter (cer.); with-each-other one-who-goes- 

'aze-' xd-ydi- herbalist; one-who-goes-for-medicine 
'dnid na-ydi- newly born infant; one-who-recently-moves-about 
Od xdlyd-hi- absentee; the-particular-one-who-went-for . . .'sbenefit 

(YME 1) 
fd- bini* bikehgo 'atali niydhigi- volunteer; the-one-who-went-amongst- 

just-according-to-his-own-will (YME 96) 
naxaydh profession; one-person-goes-about-(for)-things (YME 67) 
naxaydh sodizin religion; one-person-goes-about prayer 
na-lni'h yil na-ydi- disease carrier; one-who-goes-about-with-disease 

(YME 14) 
kd naydi- sick person; one-who-goes-about-ill (AB 30) 
xa'a'a-h biya-d^ na-ydi- easterner; one-from-down-under-the-east- 

goes-about (YME 28) 
cdda'd-h biya-d^ na-ydi- southerner; one-from-under-the-south-goes- 

about (YME 81) 
cd niyd-h solstice ; sun-pauses-at-end 

354 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.46. 

djic xdydi' intermediary who arranges ceremony; one-who-goes-after- 

medicine -bundle 
tda- naydhi tourist; one-who-goes-about-in-restricted-territory (YME 

td£-h diydhi- turtle; the-particular-one-who-starts-going-in-vain 
* 01 ndxodiyd-h dizziness; things-move-in-a-circle-with ... (YM 103, 

YME 26) 
*atah y idzd entry; he-came-in-amongst (YME 29) 
'dM Hdzd discovery (YME 25) 
0a* ni'i-ye-dzd ambush, ambuscade (YME 3) 
na'&dsdzd destruction (YME 24) 
yah'o'o'dzd entry; someone-has-gone-in (YME 29) 
xa'asdzd ascent, ascension (YME 4) 
xa'da'o-dzd descent (YME 24) 
za*nU biniyi ndxidi'dzd meal-gathering (cer.) 
tain be- na'addhi crutch; the-stick-with-which-there-is-walking-about 

(YME 22) 
tcaxalxe-l nd-dzd last quarter of moon; darkness-has -returned 
t6a- na'add-h tour: going-about-in-restricted-area (YME 92) 
t6i-h 'adcsdzd fatigue; futile starting-to-go-beyond (YME 32) 

'axekd'hi- dance troupe, dance units in a group 

HH'kd'h danco units one after another 

H-kd'h sandpainting, sandpainting figures 

naSakai Night Dance dancers 

na*kai Mexican, rover 

If' 9 'alyada'kah horse race; horses run-away-from-one-another 

'ana* ba>* ncfalde'h war 

\ilUi de-zde'* war 

ba- dd-'fi-lde''' survival (of custom): from-it group-moved-away-in-front 

6e* 'aydriildehi sieve ; that-by-means-of-which-(particles)-move-through 

(YME 78) 
be' na'alde-h means of travel, conveyance; by -means-of- it-group- 
travels (NT 156:12) 
be- xd'da'alddhigi- stairway; that-by -means-of- which-there-is-cust.- 

ascending (YME 83) 
naxoke- na-lde-M* earth beings (animal and human) : groups-that-move- 

yoda na-lde'h birds (cer.), those who inhabit the atmosphere 
xoc bi-ldi'hi' cactus cleaner (plant name) 
icq*' 6e* yildehi toilet paper; that-by -means-of -which-excrement-is- 

cleaned (YME 92) 
tdil be* yildihi mattock; that-by -means-of -which-herbs-are-cleared 

(YME 54) 

Compounds of stems for "go" : 

Oa- wo-about. . .-"go" (pres.,*£-pf.) (the fut. singular is -ga*l with na~ 

about) busy oneself at, be busy about, do . . . ; ... goes about for. . . 

Oa- ni-start for. . . -"go" (inc., m-pf.) visit . . . ; start-to-go-to. . . 
Oa* nt-end-cess.. . .-dd'h (inc.cess. jpf.cess.) one attacks . . . (EW 116:2) 
Oi-(K O-na-against) cess.. . .-"go" (inc.cess., pf.cess.) join . . ., become 

one of a party (YM 67) 
Oq-h m-end-ni-start for . . . -"go" (inc., m-pf.) be physically tired of . . . 



dah-na-about . . .-yah (pres., ^-pf.) heart beats fast (EW 114:9) 

dahi- . . . -yd-h (inc.) be willing to . . . , intend to . . . 

dei rw-end-m-start for... -"go" (inc., wi-pf.) shrink, turn upward in 

drying (as leather, meat drying) (YM 72) 
Odd-h m-start for. . .-"go" (inc., m-pf.) meet ...,head ... off(YM65) 
ia-amongst. . .-"go" (pres., si-pf.) (fut. is -ga-l) go about, be amongst 

(YM 69) 
id-di-start against. . . -"go" (fut. td-di-di- . . . -gd'l) wander about, roam 

(YM 64) 
nd*s dt-start from. . .-"go" (inc., m-pf.) (fut. di-di-) advance, progress, 

start to go forward (YM 66) 
n£-end-'a-beyond-c&-cess.. . .-"go" (inc.cess., pf.cess.) break loose (FH) 
kd wa-about. . .-"go" (pres., si-pf.) be ill, sickly, invalided (YM 69) 
&d-(or xd-)ni-start for-(nd-)against . . . -"go" (prog., inc., m-pf.) go after 

(YM 70) 
Okd-(or 0-#d)ni-start for-(n4-)against. . .-"go" (inc., m-pf.) go after . . 
OMMedjf 'a-beyond. . .-"go" (inc., yi-pf.) replace, take ,./s place 

(YM 68) 
Okd-' dah-forth-di-cesa. . . .-"go" (inc.cess., pf.cess.) start tracking 
OUe* '<$* J ax6-(<C 'aon-together-w-d-against) . . . -dd-h (inc., si-[nd-] pf.) 

bypass, go around . . . (YM 43) 
OUi dt-start from. . .-"go" (inc., s*-pf.) quit, give up, stop doing — 

(YM 63) 
OUi ao-things-cft-start from... -"go" (inc., si-pi.) sing, perform cere- 
mony over . . . 
0#i-(< #i-over-nd-against)m-start for-(nd-)against. . .-"go" (inc., nt-pf.) 

find, discover; come upon . . . (YM 65) 
a?oda-down di-cess. . . . -"go" (inc.cess., pf.cess.) dismount 
xa-out-:ro-things. . .-gd'l (fut., pres., yi-pi.) (3 only) things begin on 

earth, originate (YM 62) 
Otid m-start for . . . -"go" (inc., ra-pf.) separate from. . . (YM 66) 
Olid nd-back-nt-(nd-) . . . -dd-l (fut., inc., si-pf.) divorce . . . (YM 71) 
Ot6q,-h wo-about-'os-theme. . ,-da-l (fut., pres., $*-pf.) be protected 

tte-h dvstart from. . . -"go" (inc., si-pf.) get tired (YM 63) 
01 'oxt-together-d^-cess. . . . -"go" (inc.cess., pf.cess.) (fut. 01 'azi-di-di-) 

meet . . . (YM 64) 
01 daft-forth-c^-cess. . . .-"go" (inc.cess., pf.cess.) originate with ... 

01 nd-xo-di-st&rt from. . .-gd-l (fut., inc., si-pi.) be dizzy; with ... 

things-start -to-move-in-circle (YM 72) 
ty OJna-about. . .-"go" (pres., si-pi.) ride horseback ; horse goes-about 

with... (YM 72) 

'aat-together-da-pl.-dt-cess kah (inc.cess., pf.cess.) they go in pairs 

(EW 246, n.9) 
"altti na-about. . . -kah (fut., pres., st-pf.) be crowded (YM 110) 
Ol 'alta --nd -back. . .-kah (inc., si-pi.) get mixed (as sheep of several 

flocks) (YM 110) 

'd-self-#t-over m-dt-emit . . . -ddh (pres.) try to live as best one can 

'e-' Oe* #d-(< #a-out-nd-back) cft-cess.. . .-ddh (inc.cess., pf.cess.) put on 

clothes (EW 112:19) 
'e*' Oi- nd-back. . . -dd-h (inc., ni-pf.) dress; go-back-into-clothes (YM 71) 

nd-di-ceas -dd-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) rise, get up (YM 63) 

ni-end-dini-proh . . .-dd'l (fut., cont.) arrive in a modest way 

350 NAVAHO GRAMMAB 12.46.-12.46a. 

ni-end-si-haxm. . .-d&'h (inc., m-pf.) be down to the last resource, 

desperate, panicky, at the end of one's string (BS) 
yah'a-di-m-get stuck. . . -dd*h (inc., 2/^-pf.) go in and stay 

Oya- 'a-beyond-dmi-prol.. . .-dah (fut., inc., s^-pf.) come under . . ,'s 
power (YM 46) 

Oyd dini-proh . . ,-l-dah (fut., cont., st-pf.) sift . . ., strain . . . ; cause- 
pi. -obj. -to-move-through . . . (YM 45) 

Oyd m-end-ni-start for. . .-l-dd-h (inc., m-pf.) sift, strain . . . (YM 45) 


-l-yol -yo* -ye'd -ye*d -yod one person runs 

(opt.) (cp. -yol "hoe, long 

stiff obj. sways") 

-l-tc4'l -tci'h ~tc4*l -tcfrh -tc$s 1 two run, one 

(opt.) -tcq? (mom.) J chases another 

•djah -djah -dje-h\ , . , , . , , , , • , 

rfV.' f ~^ e '"' ~^ a pi. obj. are; pi. run 

Nouns based on the stems for "run" : 

'axd-djolye-di baseball game (YME 6) 

'axfrdjolye-di tidajdilkal baseball 

''axil ka i and > alyo' > cooperation; running-after-cust.-with-each-other 

(YME 19) 
'dkd 'e'elycd help, aid, assistance; someone-runs-by beyond-after- 
something (YME 42) 
be- xadah dahn'tidyoH- parachute ; the-particular-one-with-which-there 

is-moving-down-off (YME 62) 
toyol Taos, New Mexico; Running Water (YME 89) 
na-lyodi runner; one-who-runs(ran)-about 

kg' bitis dacdilyo* fire jumping rite (cer.) ; they(4)-jump-over-fire 
xata-li* yikd ^analyoH assistant to chanter; one-who-runs-after-singer 
sq' bidvlye-d shooting star 
tsi na-lyoli- grindstone 

The following compounds are formed with the stems of "run." If 
any of the three may be used the stem is indicated as "run;" if only- 
one has been found, the stem is given : 

'a-dini-get stuck. . .-"run" (cont., yvpf.) get stuck while running 
(YM 84) 

Oa- di-cess.. . .-l-yol (fut. cess., inc.cess., pf.cess.) beat ... in race, . . . 
runs from . . . (YM 82) 

-kd 'a-beyond-nd-cust. -'a-theme. . .-"run" (cust., 2/i-pf.) help . . . ; run- 
beyond-after . . . (YM 83-4) 

OU4' dt-emit. . .-"run" (pres., yi-j)f.) collide with . . ., bump into. . ., 
run against . . . 

Oki-cess. . . .-"run" (fut.cess., inc.cess., pf.cess.) attack ...; pause- 
running-over . . . (YM 84) 

~n% > idd--(< ica -into unknown space-nd-backj'a-beyond. . „ -l-yol (fut., 
inc., 2/i-pf.) lose . ..'s mind, memory, forget; . ..'s mind runs- 
into-foreign-territory (SCE) 

01 'a2#i-cess.. . .-"run" (inc.cess., pf.cess.) attack, fight with ... 

01 dafra-di-cesa. . . . -l-yol (fut.cess., inc.cess., pf»cess.) ride in car 

12.46a.-12.47. usage and vocabulary 357 

lj-' 01 na-about. . . -l-yol (fut., pres., si-pf.) ride horseback; horse-runs- 

about-with . . . 
Oiyah Jdi-out-nt-start for-(n-a-). . ,-l-yo' (mom., m-pf.) one passes 

both obj. are running (YM 82) 
Oiyah ici-out-m-start for-(nd-) . . . -djah (mom., ni-pf.) pi. persons pass 

. . . , all are running (YM 82) 
Oiyah ^ct-out-^-'a-beyond-nt-uni -l-tcd-h (cont., m-[na-] pf.) two 

running pass . . . running (YM 82) 
Oiyahgo-, instead of Oiyah, with the three preceding compounds 

indicates "running obj. pass stationary obj." 

12.47. Verbs of Doing and Making 

12,47. The several stems on which verbs of doing and making are 
formed are treated in the same way. With few exceptions, 'd-(nd-) 
"thus" is thematic with all. The passive stems are given below as 
well as the active stems. The relation between 4-ne -t and -IH is very 
close, if indeed they are not alternants. 

-'il -*i*h -*i -*i'h -'i'd do, make; mimic 

- { (mom.) action, imitate doing 
-'*•' (opt.) 

-fyl 4yh -t\ 'tj-h -fyd be made, be done to; 

-t(' y (opt.) be mimicked, imitated 

■ne-fi \ _y a . ^ acC omplish 

(opt.) -ni-h 

rti-h -rle-h -dm- be done to, be made 


4e? _ , 7 , make, construct, do, 

-it'h -la* . 

(opt.) create 

~n6 1 1 
-ni'l > 
-ni4 J 

•rii-l \ 

-rii-l J 

-le-l 1 

•li-l \ 

•li-l J 

-dU-l\ «> be made, constructed, 

■ dm \ (opt.) ■ dU ' h ' dla ' created 


Noims based on stems for "make" : 

"at&&V\ punishment (YME 67) 

'at€$Ti-ni- harm (YME 41) 

''atixo-dza* sad occurrence 

'atVo'li'M* cause of illness 

'atia kg" be- "ityhigi- wick; that-oil-with-which-it-is-done-thus 

'aze- H-Vini physician, doctor; one -who-makes -medicine 

'asdzfy do- ba- ndjitpda continence (FF) 

'atsi-td- to "dlni-h baptism; water-is-put-(on)-forehead (YME 6) 

'a 'dxwi-nfy kindness (YME 48) 

*ana i aln£'h reconstruction (YME 70) 

'dnffh witchcraft (EW 142:2) 

'dkoti'tii- anyone who does so 

"dtsi tco- y i<hi- firstaid; the-particular-useful-(thing)-that-does-first 

(YME 34) 
'dxdtf behavior; things-done-thus 

358 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.47. 

'dxo-fy guidance (YME 39) 

'dxo'dza'higi- occurrence (YME 59) 

'dxo-fydigi- occurrence (YME 59) 

y dV% production of goods (YME 66) 

V "&£&za- expansion (YME 31) 

Ve£j mimicry 

VeZ'j imitation, copy 

'e'eVf-gi photography (YME 64) 

'e'eVi-ni' photographer (YME 64) 

'e'elya- photograph (YME 64) 

^o-ldji'^ lahgo 'dnd-rii-l phase of moon (YME 64) 

bd-h bil "dVini yeast (YME 100) 

bd-h 'dVi-gi- bakery (YME 6) 

bq-hdgi *dxdt\ misbehavior, crime (YME 55) 

be- *frxam>h biniye 'dlyaigi* monument (YME 56) 

b4-c bit6i-y$- 'dVini stove; iron-(in)-which-food-is-prepared 

b6-c Igai HVini silversmith 

biye-t^i- clarification (YME 16) 

bil "€iVini baking powder (YME 6) 

wd'dndo'ndi be- xaz'd-ni* 'ddeiFinigi* Congress; those-make-laws-at- 

Washington (YME 18) 
wd-cindo'ndi 'ctiah be- xaz'dwi* H-Vinigi- congressman; the-one- 

amongst-whom-laws-are-made-at-Washington (YME 18) 
dini danini-higl- xacte deile'i undertaker (YME 94) 
dil 'dlrU-h Wasserman test; blood- is-done-to (AB 36) 
do- 'aMexoPpda disobedience; things-are-not-done-according-to-some- 

thing (YME 25) 
do* bil ntsixdke-sigi- 'dxo-dza* accident; that-which. was-not-thought-of- 

happened (YME 1) 
tVi-lya- wound (YME 99) 
tVo'Mi* one who gets sick 
fd- 'dkvnfrM 'dtii- need, necessity (YME 58) 
fa- H-cdjdni 'tfilnfrh clarification (YME 16) 

td-doWe'dda-V\-gi factory ;place-where-anything-pl.-are-made(YME 31) 
to- 01 'dtf imagination; merely with. • . it-is-done-thus (YME 44) 
f6' be'elya* copy; merely it-is-imitated (YM 132) 
nahdji' ko'ilya- riddance; to-a-point-aside-so-(far) it-was done-thus 

(YME 72) 
na-ltso-s bikd-' 'e'elyaigi- picture; the-paper-on-which-imitation-is- 

made (YME 64) 
na-lni- 'dyo-li-li- cause of epidemic 
xacte dayile?& carpenter 

xacfe xodini-h preparation; things-are-made-ready (YME 66) 
zdbq^h y aV\-h lipstick, salve; mouth-border-is-made 
aa-d nd-ndlahd^ sa-d be- ' dtida-lne' translation ; from-another T language- 

words-are-cust.-made-with-them (YME 92) 
Oj£e H-rini stepfather; one-who-acts-(as)-father 
djoxona-'6i H-Vini watchmaker (YME 96) 
tdi-yq 'aVini gone' kitchen; room-in-which-food-is-prepared 
tco-'i usefulness (YME 95) 
tco-Vi use (YME 95) 

tdi-h "&4V\ failure; in-vain there-is-imitation (YME 32) 
la' yiVj yolyei- success; the-particular-one-that-is-called-accomplish- 

ment (YME 86) 
la? yilydi-gi- accomplishment (YME 1) 
lahao 'Pfate-h metamorphosis : chance-is-made (YME 160-1) 


Since all stems are used vary idiomatically, and since usage is 
very specific, formulas may be repeated for each verb of doing or 

Compounds with -'f'J: 

'ati-ni-(nd-). . .4-'{h (pres., ni-[nd-] pf.) do harm to. . . , desecrate (EW 

Od 'acdja' nd--again-'a-beyond. . .-l-*{h (pres., yi-pf.) give another 

chance to... (YM 133) 
'd-thus-O-(nd-) . . . l-'yh (cont., y^'-pf.) do thus to . . . 
'd-thus-nd--again-xo-things-(nd-). . .-Z-*f (pres.) do holy things again 
'a-xo-di-. . .-l-'fh (pres.) pretend to do thus (NT 32:36) 
Oe* 'o-theme. . . -V\h (pres.) copy, take picture of, imitate; imitate doing 

... (YM 103, 132, FH) 
'{-(< 'd-self-nd-against)d£-start against. . .-£-'£ (pres.) do for . . .'s self 

(NT 42:12) 
tf-'rftft-self cess.. . .-l-'i-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) hurt oneself (YH 160) 
fd- 01 na-xo- V/ -beyond. . .-l-'j-h (inc., #t-pf.) lay belongings with ... 

(as corpse), bury with (FH, NT 430:28) 
yo-'a-out of sight. . . -l- y j-h (inc., yi-j>f.) bury corpse (NT 432: 19) 
fco-so-(nd-). . .-l-'fh (pres.) do thus to . . . (NT 48:26) 
xacfe *d-thus-nd-back-c&-cess. . . .-l~^-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) get ready 

(YM 162) 
xact6 ni-start for. . . -l-'^h (inc., ni-pf.) do a good job 
tcoi- or icv-(teo-use-si-harm). . .-l-^ih (pres., si-'pf.) use, be of service 

(YM 102) 
t66-h 'd-thus-(nd-) . . . -l-'ih (pres., 2^-pf.) try to do, do in vain 
tt&'h 'd-thus-O-(nd-) . . . -V\-h (inc., m-pf.) do to ... in vain (NT 100: 10) 
Otdf fco-so-yi-rep.asp. . . .-l-'ih (pres.) make motions toward ... (NT 

W 'a-i-di-start against. . .-l-'fk (pres.) count on . . ., depend upon . . . 
dloh . ,-l-'i'h (inc.) chuckle; laughter- 
breaks-out (YM 100) 

Compounds with 4{'l\ 

Oct- 'ati-xo -things. . ,-tfli (pres., 2^-pf-) treat . . . with respect (NT 86:18) 

The two paradigms Oa* 7i4-(7wf-)against. . .-tifh (pres.) and Oa* 
yi-ni-(nd). . .-tffk (pres.) seem to be identical in meaning. WM and 
FH consider the first person yinictfh as irregular with the regular 
forms of 7&a-(7wx-)against for all other persons, but in the texts cited 
yinic- seems to be a paradigm in its own right. The forms of both are 
constantly used; the Navaho translate them often as "bother." 

Oa- nd-(nd-)against. . ,-tfh (pres., 8i-[nd-] pf.) attend to . . ., be con- 
cerned about . . . , take action on . . . , annoy . . . , nag, molest, 
bother . . . (FH, YM 202, NT 98:20) 

Oa- nd-#o-things-(nd-). . .4\h (pres., ai~[nd] pf.) plan for ..., discuss 
about . . . , have a care for . . . , concern oneself about . . . , make a 
settlement (NT 84:2, 344:24) 

Oa- yi-ni-(nd-). . .-f%h (pres., 8i-[nd-] pf.) attend to . . ., be concerned 
about . . . , take action on . . . , talk about . . . , annoy, nag, molest, 
bother . . . (AB, FH, FS 24, NT 38:9) 


Oa- xwi--(< xo-thinga-yi-)ni-...-tih (pres., si-pf.) discuss, talk over, 

agree about things, have a trial (NT 292 : 4) 
Od 'aU-suffering-(nd-). . .-tfh (pres., yvpf.) suffer for . ..'s benefit, 

devote oneself to . . . completely (YM 162 ; £g) 
'&-thus . . . -tfh (pres.) behave, be extremely . . . , be very . . . 
Od 'd-thus-#o-things-(ttd-) . . . -tfh (pres.) be kind, congenial, sympathetic 

to ... 
*dda- (< 'dd-self-o* for )nd'-di -start against.', ,-tfl be bashful (AB) 
'dk6-(nd~) . . . -tfh (pres., «/t-pf.) behave, act so (NT 340 : 15) 
'd-thus-#o-things . . .tfh (fut., pres., yi-pf-) things happen, things go on 

(NT 264:25) 
'd-(< 'd-thus-nd-backj-rro-things cess.. . ,-fy-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) back 

out of ... , give up . . . , quit . . . ( YM 202) 
Oe> Oa- «-. . .-tfh (pres.) criticize . . . (EW 78:20) 
to- 'd-thus-(nd-). . .-tfh (pres.) "just fool around'* (YM 160) 
to* Ol 'd-thus-(nd-). . .-tfh (pres.) imagine, merely with ... it is done 

thus (YM 162) 
xalq Oa' xwi--(<i xo-yi-)ni-(nd-) . . . -tfh (pres.) be hospitable 
xo-things. . .tfh (pres., yi-pf.) things happen (YM 161-2; NT 136:1, 

Olttd-(<i Afi-nd-against)nd-cust.-<2i-cess. . . .-tfh (cust.) get even with . . . 

(as a favor or in revenge) (YM 162) 

Compounds with -ne-l (-ni% -nrl): 

*ati-(nd-). . .-l-nfrh (inc.cess., pf.cess.) be seriously injured, insulted 

'd-thus-(nd-) . . . -ni*h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) act, do thus, make (YM 160) 
'd-thus-wd-back-(nd-). . .-l-n4-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) reconstruct (BS) 
'dko-(nd-) . . . -l-ne-h (inc., m-pf.) make so (BS) 
'd-thus-xo-place. . . -Z-ne' (mom., pf.cess.) establish . . . 
d-thus-a;o-things-(nd-). . ,-ni-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) happen, things be- 
come, universe becomes 
del 'd-thus-(nd-) . . . -n£-h (pres., yt-pf.) raise, head, look up (YM 160) 
do- la? #o-things. . . -n6-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) be unable to accomplish 
^-suffering-<2t-cess.. . .-l-ni-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) be wounded (YM 160) 
to- Ol 'd-thus-(nd-). . . -nfrh (inc.cess., pf.cess.) imagine (YM 162) 
ko-(nd-) . . . -n4-h (pres.) do so, act in such a way (NT 186 : 20) 
xa-di-. . ,-l-ni-h (cont.) complete 

xacU* 'd-thus-(wd-) . . . -l-ni-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) get ready, prepare 
la* . . . -ni-h (cont.) accomplish, be able to . . . 

lahgo 'd-thus-#o-things-(nd-) . . . -ne-h (pres.) things (as weather) change 
(YM 161) 

Compounds with -M'l (-Irl, -Ivl) : 

'ati-fad-). . ,-U-h (pres.) injure, punish (YM 133) 

^a^-'a-theme-(nd-) . . . -U-h (pres.) be injurious, harmful (YM 133) 

'd-thus-O-(n-d-) . . . -U-h (pres., yi-pf.) do thus to . . . 

*aU6£ 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (pres.) close . . ., clench fist, push together 

in a pile, fold ... (YM 130) 
Od 'acdja' 'a-theme. . .-U-h (pres.) give ... a chance, opportunity 

(YM 132) 
Od 'q- 'd-thus-^o-place-(nd-) . . . -U-h (pres.) open a way for . . . 
'd-thus-iro-place-(nd-) . . . -U-h (pres.) clear a space (YM 131) 
'dfcd-thus-(nd-). . .-U-h (pres.) make ... so, do it right, correctly 

(YM 129) 

12.47.-12.48. T7SAGE AND VOCABTJLABY 361 

"dlah 'd-thus-(n4-). . ,-U-h (pres.) gather, bundle them together, 

assemble (YM 131) 
'q- 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (pres.) open . . . (YM 131) 
Oe- 'a-i. . ,-U-h (pres.) imitate, take picture (YM 132) 
Oe- xa-xo-di-cess. . . ,-U-h (inc. cess., pf.cess.) dress. . . with . . ., fix . . . 

up with . . . , paint evenly with (NT 264 : 4) 
Oi-' xi-l 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) pack into ... (as 

wagon, car) (YM 130) 
bizdilidgo 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) shine . . ., make . . . 

shiny (YM 130) 
dei 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) lift, raise ... (YM 130; 

NT 158:16) 
td- H-cdjdni 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (pres.) make it clear, clarify..., 

leave no doubt about it (YM 130) 
td- 01 xasihgo 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) encourage 

(YM 130) 
nahdfy lco-(nd-), . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) push . . . aside (as curtain) 

(NT 178:3) 
ni-end-Vw-m-start for. . ,-U-h (inc., m-pf.) leave . . . (FH) 
m-end-'£-(< 'a-i-nd-against)'a-i-(nd-). . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) halt 

stop (YM 132) 
ya- 'd-thus-(nd-) . . . -U-h (pres.) bend down with . . . (YM 161) 
yeigo 'd-thus-(nd-), . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) get worse, worsen (YM 

-kd 'd-thus-'a-i-(nd-). . ,-U-h (inc.cess., pf.cess.) order ... (as from 

catalogue) (YM 136) 
sodizin 'd-thus-(wd-) . . . -U-h (pres.) perform prayer rite 
Ot6f 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (pres., 2/t-pf.) write to . . . 
Ot6f Ond-Uia 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (pres., yi-pf.) wink at . . . ; toward 

's eye does-thus (YM 133) 

Old-hdi 'a-theme. . . -li-l (fut., pres., yi-p£.) do more than . . . 

Id" , , ,-U-h (pres.) be successful, accomplish, succeed at — (YM 130) 

lahgo 'd-thus-(nd-). . ,-U-h (pres.) change, alter (appearance, character) 

(YM 130, 160) 
Ol yd-' 'd-thus-#o-things-(nd-). . ,-U-h (pres.) bluff, scare . . . out of it 

(YM 131) 

12.48-12.53. Verbs of Being and Becoming 

12.48. Even though nouns include a verbal connotation "it is 
a ..." and though stems may include a description which must 
often be thought of as "it is . . . ," there are nevertheless several 
stems for "be." One, -tfrl, has almost a full set of principal parts, a 
few used often, the rest infrequently. This stem is probably nearest 
(though not very near) to the English copula, and expresses state or 
condition in a general way. It seems to be a part of some of the un- 
conjugated forms that have been called "adjectives" (9.), but often 
they precede some form of -(i*l, usually the 'a-static or present : 

'ayoi 'ite (< y d£i) it is superior, fine, excellent 

'q* *&£6 it is open 

mc£\- "dU it is a coyote (when one thought it was something else) 

(FS 15) 
do- 'dUhidah something harmless, normal, just as is to be expected 

362 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.48.-12.51. 

fd- 'crnl* y df4i- truth; the-particular-thing-that-is-true 

y&ati'h good, pleasing, agreeable 

'M bil xaodji-' 'at£ these are your siblings; these with-them you-were- 

born they -are (EW 96:20) 
xaitd (< xa-yiti) how is he ? 
xanti how are you ? 
do- bit6j,dji nVokes 'dti-da he never gets a break; not toward -him-side 

twisting-it-is (Ad 1/49:1) 
tiidd fd- 'dfe-gi the exact conditions (EW 106:2) 
tiidd Oe-lf4 ... is absolute (NT 210: 1) 
da-cq? *df£, xacq' **&£& of course (FS 4, 17) 
do- tcg-l 'dti-go it is repulsive (FS 6) 
lahgo 'dffrgo otherwise; being-changed 

12.49. -fi, -if probably static, refers to specific persons: 

dine* Hfi (< *d£i) he is a man, an Indian, a Navaho 

xa'dfi y ifi who is he ? 

xasti-n S 'dfy he is Mr. S. 

dja-'abani 1 asdz4' i *dtf it is Bat Woman (EW 120:3). Compare za'dtl 

Hfe what is he ? dine \ife he is a Navaho 

12.50. -If probably with thematic static ni-, seems to mean "be" 
in the sense of ''belong to, be of . . . " : 

'mi' nli-ni- (< ni-li-i-) determination; that-particular-thing-that-is- 

someone's-mind (YME 24) 
yada-ni- nlfi his mother-in-law; the-one-that-is-her-son-in-law (man 

speaking when he does not avoid his mother-in-law) 
yidin nl% he craves it (YM 125) 

da'nfi ha* 'alah Hlf celebration; games for-them crowd is-thus 
danlinigi- (< da-n-lf-igi-) those -who -belong- to . . . 
) yil nl\ they agree, they are congenial, loving, sympathetic, loyal, "all 

wrapped up in each other" 
na-be-hd la? nV danlf the Navaho are unprogressive (YM 124) 
yiada nlf he is out of breath 
xwi- nlj he is satisfied 
ci nih nclpgo (< ni-c-li-go) 'iih . . . nty^ if I were you 

12.50a. Hlf (probably < 'd-thus-nt-abs.-W) is probably a form of 
-If; it means "be. worth, be valuable, have value": 

Hlf it is valuable, high-priced; it is left to fate 

bil Hl( he is tolerant; with-him there-is-value 

do- %l$-da it is cheap, worthless (YM 127) 

do- b$*h Hlinida it is of no value, worthless (YM 127) 

dokwi-cq' b$-h 'Hi how much is it worth ? (YM 127) 

12.51. xglg be available; things-are. The stem 44 may be derived 
Erom -Z/-be-<70-subordinating suffix. 

ntcij x6l6 you have wood; your firewood there-is, your-firewood is- 

Oe* xolonigi- possession, possessor; that-which-is- . . .'s-means-of (YME 

fd- do-1^6 le-yV daxolonigi- mineral ; whatever-things-in-the-earth-may- 

be (YME 55) 
Oa- scfd x$l$ make a complaint (YM 141) 
dini ndxddld-ni- (< ndxo-d-ty-i-) Athabaskans; the-particular-ones- 


12.52.-12.53. usage and vocabttlaby 363 

12.52. The negative "be nothing" is expressed by the theme 'd- 

with the stem -di'l: ♦ 

^\-l _ .di-h — -di'd "adin be nothing, wanting 

(opt.) lacking; disappear, die ; 

destroy, use up ; 
dwindle, become 

Compounds built on -d{'l: 

"dbi'tiadi'd riddance; it-has-been-made-nothing-by -someone (YME 72) 

'adin zero; there-is-none (YME 101) 

'd-d "ddini- bachelor, widower, unmarried man; the-particular-one- 

who -has -no -wife 
kq 'ddini- unmarried woman, widow 

V&df <Z riddance, disappearance ; something-has -disappeared (YME 72) 
bfrgaci- tco' "ddini- steer; the-particular-cattle-that-have-no-genitals 

(YME 84) 
dibdtco* "ddmi- wether; sheep-that-has-no-genitals (YME 97) 
yini ^tidin excitement (YME 30) 

dj6i 'ddyh tuberculosis; lungs-are-disappearing (YME 93) 
tcin 'q-h y ddin cleanliness; there-is-no-dirt-on , . . (YME 16) 
tciriildi'digi- survivor (YME 87) 
bil\-' 'ddin his horse is gone; his-horse is missing 
ly be- '6din he has no horse; horse with-him is-none 
cibe-so 'ddin I have no money; my -money is-lacking 


•le-l -le-h 





become, change, evolve, 

le' (opt.) 

develop, happen, occur 

■le-l -le-h 




cause change, develop- 

W (opt.) 


ment, cause to happen 

■dle-l -dle-h 




be changed, developed, 

■die' (opt.) 


Nouns compounded with -le'l: 

xis bi- xazl\- y pus in sac; pus-has-become-in-place (AB 2) 
Oz4-' xazlp* demise, decease; throat, (breath )has -become (YME 23) 
Ol 'ana-' xazl{- y declaration of war; with ... things -have -become • 
hostile (YME 23) 

Verbs compounded with -le'l: 

'a- . . . -le-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) (3 only) event occurs (YM 126) 

'a-si-pi -Jf ' (si-pi.) accept offering (NT 178:5) 

'ato^' xazly'' baby was born (YM 125) 

J ana- xo- . . . 4e*l (fut., pres., si-pi.) war breaks out (YM 125) 

Oa- sa-d xo-. . .-le-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) complain about . . . (YM 127) 

'dlah . . .-le-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) assemble, crowd becomes (NT 178:22) 

Oe- 'atah . . . -le-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) become involved in . . . ; with . . . 

amongst it-becomes (YM 124) 
Oe- xo- . . . -le-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) come into possession of ... ; with . . . 

things-become (YM 126) 
bq\-h 'a-si-pi. . . . -iy (si-pi.) it costs . . . 
be- 1$ 'a-#£-pf. . . . -Zf*' (si-pi.) come to agreement (YM 127) 

364 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 12.53. 

Ode (orOdi) 'ani-ld-' si-pf. . . . -Zf (si-pf.) overwhelm . . ., beyond-one's- 

capacity it-became (YM 125) 
to Oq-h xo-...4e-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) perspire, sweat; water on . . . 

place-becomes (YM 127) 
na-about-#o-place. . .-le-l (fut., pres., si-pf.) things appear, one roams 

about (YM 127) 
OUe xo-. . .-le-l (fut., pres., ai-pf.) follow . . .'s instructions; according- 

to . . . things-happen 
Oyidji' . . . -le-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) power goes into . . . 
xo-things-dt-emit. . .-le-l (fut., pres., si-pf.) things originate, come into 

existence (YM 123) 
xwi- si-pi. . . . -If' (si-pi.) become satisfied, be satisfied, satiated 
Oz&s xo-si-pi.. . .-Zf-' (si-pi.) . . . died; . . . 's breath became-super- 

natural (YM 126) 
01 yi-" xo-... -le-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) scare . . . , bluff ... out (YM 126) 
IdH si-. . . -Zf (s*-pf.) become united ; one-became (YM 125) 

Nouns compounded with -dle-l : 

'atah "asdl^ involvement; amongst it-has-become (YME 46) 

'atah 'idty* membership (YME 54) 

'a#e xode-sdlp' conquest, defeat (YME 18) 

'asdzq- nddle-hi Changing Woman ; the-woman-who-cust.-changes 

da,ld ni-dli'* all relatives of clan-group 

to Oq-h nddle-higi- sweat, perspiration; the-water-that-cust.-appears- 

on-surface-of . . . 
nddle-k transvestite, berdache; it(person) -changes 
y&at&'h na'ddle-h recovery; good-becomes-again (YME 70) 
ya'dti-h nd'o-dle-l convalescence; good is-becoming-back-prog. (YME 

xacttic isi nddle-he" concrete ; the-mud-that-changes-(to)-stone (YME 18) 
tsoi nddle'hd Changing Grandchild (myth.) 
tcHty- cac nddle-hi Changing Bear Maiden (myth.) 

Verbs compounded witli -dlcl: 

'ati di -dini -prol . . .-dle-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) be overcome with joy, talk 

incoherently because of joy (YM 53) 
'ati n£-(< nd-)di-ni-get stuck ... -dle-h (pres., si-pi.) sob from grief 

(NT 170:7) 
, 'axil m-stat. . . . -dly y (stat.) be lovers; become-together 
l 'alUis ni-stat. . . . -dl{- y (stat.) be lovers; be-on-each-other's-side 

"dkth nd-'«i-(< 'a-[nd-])back. . .-dle-l (fut., cont., si-pi.) assemble, get 

together in crowd 
fd-fj-d dini-pvol. . . . -dle-l (fut., pres., *i-pf.) be curbed of . . . 's own 

accord, curb oneself; just tame it-becomes-prol. 
-na nd-(nd-)hsbck. . .-dle-h (pres., si-pi.) recover . . .'s health (YM 126) 
na-back-ajo-things. . .-dle*l (fut., pres., s^-pf.) revert to former state, 

change back to, be restored (YM 126) 
-nV nd-back-xo-things. . .-dle-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) regain consciousness; 

. . . 's mind is-changed-back (YM 53) 
ya'dte'-h nd-(nd-)back. . .-dle*h (pres., si-pi.) get well; well be-changed- 

back (YM 126) 
OUeh di-. . . -dle-l (fut., pres., si-pi.) overcome, defeat; according-to . . . 

change-is-emitted (YM 53) 

12.54.-12.56. USAGE AND VOCABULARY 365 

12.54-12.60. Verbs of Communication 

12.54. Verbs of saying, telling, speaking, learning, teaching, and 
instructing are treated in particular ways. The stem -tih "speak, 
talk, converse" usually, but not always, has a prefix yd-, probably 
meaning "speak with good or normal intentions." The two stems, 
-nih "relate, explain," and -nvl "say to . . . , tell . . . ," are so closely 
related in certain forms and in meaning as to have been frequently 
confused by those presenting Navaho in English. 

Verbs of teaching and learning have been included here because 
the stem -a*l seems to have the general meaning "communicate 
with ..., divulge knowledge." In addition, the stem -tf-l means 
"instruct, guide, demonstrate." The choice of terms based on these 
stems is difficult to determine. Rarely are they used to mean 
"instruct in school," for which compounds of -tah "count, do in 
series, read" are used (cp. YME 90). 


-tih -tih -W -ti-h ~tV speak, converse, talk, dis- 

(opt.) cuss, debate, make a 

speech; put a spell on 
with words 

Nouns compounded with -tih : 

^awi-Ui ydltiH Walapai Indians; those-who-speak- (like) -babies 

Oe-c bi- ydtiHgi- telephone: the-metal-into-which-there-is-speaking (FF) 

tddidf- be- ^aydxidi-U-Mgi- pollen prayer (cer.); that-pollen-with- 

fte-tid-n yatti* talking prayerstick (cer.) 
xa-ct66-ltihi, xa-ct6i-' 'eltihi Talking God (myth.) 

Verbs compounded with -tih : 

'o-i-di-start from. . . -ti-h (inc., si-pi.) lay a spell with words 

Oa- yd-(nd-). . .-l-ti* (pres., si-pL) talk about . . ., talk . . . over (NT 

"ddil yd-(nd-) . . . 44V (pres., si-pf.) talk to oneself (YMG 59) 
Oe- Oa- yd-(nd-) . . . 4-tih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) hold . . . responsible for . . . 

biUe > dini-hgo y d-(nd-) ... 4-tih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) be sarcastic, speak 

harshly, abuse in speech (YM 207) 
diniUe-dfy Ot&p yd-(nd-). . .4-tih (fut., pres., yi-pf*) speak Navaho to 

. . . ; Navaho-according-to speak-to. . . 
do* xahdah ya-(nd~). . .4-tih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) speak hesitantly; not- 

quickly speak (YM 207) 
do- xatii'(dah) yd-(nd-) ... 4-tih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) speak indistinctly, 

garble one's talk (YM 207) 
Otso-' be- y d-(nd-) ... 4-tih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) lisp; speak-with-tongue 

(YM 206) 
Otc$ yd-(nd-) . . . 4-tih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) speak to 

12.56. The principal parts, as well as the formulas, show that 
-nih "report, relate, narrate, tell about . . .," and -nvl "say to . . ., 
tell ..." are distinctive. 



•ne* \ — 
(opt.) 1 




-ni" j 

-m 1 

-nf J 


366 NAVAHO GKAMMAK 12.56.-12.57. 

relate, explain, narrate, 
describe, tell a story, 
communicate things with 

Nouns based on -nih : 

\dUidq^ 'ada- xo-fydigi- bd xane'igi* history of what was done in the 

past (FH) 
'alttidq,-'* xaneigi* history of what was said in the past (FH) 
M'C xalnVi telephone; that-metal-which-speaks-of-things 
xane\ or xani* tale, story, myth, lore, history 
xajo'6 ba- xane" explanation; the-careful-narration-about-things 

(YME 31) 

Verbs based on -nih: 

'ayd-di 'dda-fe naxalinigi* Oe* 01 xo-di- . . . -l-nih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) outline 

. . . for . . . , tell . . . about the main part, give . . . the gist of ... ; 

those-which-appear-to-be-the-chief-things by-means-of . . . with 

. . . things -are -related (cp. YM 154) 
Oa' no-about-xo-things -l-nih (fut., pres. ai-pf.) tell ..., report to 

. . . about things (EW 186 : 26 ; NT 54 : 10) 
Oa' #o-things. . .-l-nih (fut., pres., si-pf.) tell . . . about, report to . . . 

about things (WE) 
'dda* a:o-things . . . -l-nih (fut., pres., si-pf.) confess; tell things about 

Oe* 01 xo -things ... -l-nih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) tell ... about things, 

report to ..., communicate with ... about ... (YM 154; NT 

Oe* 01 na-a:o-things. . .-l-nih (fut., pres., si-pf.) report — to . . ., tell 

. . . to . . . (WE) 
do*-#o-things. . .-l-nih (fut., pres., si-pf.) tell all, tell to the end (NT 

Ota? aro-things. . .-l-nih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) interpret for . . . (YM 154) 
td- xatii'dgo 01 xo- . . . -l-nih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) reassure . . . (YM 154) 
xane' 01 na-xo-thingp. . .-l-nih (fut., pres., si-pf.) teach history (FH) 
01 #o-things . . . -l-nih (fut., pres., yi-pf.) report to ... , tell . . . (NT 42 : 4. 

148:7, 238:3; EW 102:14) 


}-ni-h -ni 1 
-nf J 

-ni'l 1 -ni-h -ni 1 -ni*h -ni-d say to, tell 
-n\-l ) -nih > -ni'h 


Note that compounds with -ni'l take the present stem -nf (> nin-) 
even though some speakers insist that the stem is -ni'l, not -ni'l. 

Nouns based on -ni'l: 

bfrc 'dninigi* bell; the-metal-that-speaks-thus 

td'la'i nd'dnigo individual; the-only-one-who-cust.-speaks-thus (cp. 

YME 45) 
to- tdina 'dninigi* suggestion ; that-which-is-merely-spoken-out-thus 
cinpni- claimant; the-particular-onc-who-says-^I" (YME 16) 
tii-c 'dninigi* rattlesnake; the-snake-that-speaks (YME 69) 

12.57.-12.58. USAGE AND VOCABULARY 367 

Verbs compounded with -ni'l: 

Oa- na-xo-si-h&Tm . . . -ni (pres.) (with -go- fut. enclitic) predict; say - 

things-about... (NT 148:3) 
'd-(nd-)thus. . .-m*£ (fut., pres.) speak thus (when exact words are 

quoted) ; mention ... to ... ; have the sound . . . (YM 165) 
'd-thus-di-emit-(nd-) . . .-wf/ (fut., pres.) speak thus <FH) 
'd-thus-O-di-(nd-). . .-l-ni (pres.) ask ..., get permission from... 

(NT 264:20, FH) 
'd-l-di-emit . . . -ni (pres.) mean (NT 288 : 9 ; EW 92 : 22 ; FH) 
Oe- Ocf rro-things-dt-emit. . . -ni (pres.) tell the truth about . . . 
0%-{<i 0-nd-against)#o-things. . .-l-ni-h (inc.) have the say about . . ., 

be the authority for . . . (NT 168:28) 
dt-emit. . . -n\ (pres.) start saying 
-kd 'd-thus-dt-emit-(nd-). . ,-m (pres.) call attention to . . . (YM 166; 

EW 104:1) 
01 'axil na-xo-. . .-ni (pres.) talk things over with . . . ; say-to-each- 

other-with . . . 

12.58. One stem for "learn" and "teach" seems to be the same 
as - J d'l "round obj. moves," the meanings are arrived at by com- 
pounding. The meaning of the prefixes has not been satisfactorily 
isolated in full. For convenience the principal parts are repeated 

sa'q round obj. is, moves; 
communicat e 
knowledge, inform 

-'d'l -'ah 1 -'ah \ -'ah 1 -'q sa'q round < 

(opt.) ~"a*h I -'a-h J -'a-h J -'#•' divulge 

-'d-h J knowlet 

-V (rep.) 

Nouns based on -wl referring to communication of knowledge: 

'ixo-'a-h education, learning (YM 100) 

'ixo-l'a-hi pupil, understudy, one who is learning ceremony; the-one- 

be' 'axaz'dnigi- lesson; that-by-means-of-which-things-are-learned (FH) 
biM 'ixwi'do-'d-li- tuition; that-particular-value-which-will-be-for-learn- 

ing (YME 93) 
bixo-'fy'i- knowledge; particular-things-learned (YME 48) 
boxo'c'a-higi- my lesson (FH) 

Compounds with J a*l referring to learning and teaching: 

Oi-(<i 0-nd-) . .-l-'d-l (fut., inc.cess., pf.cess.) teach 

. . . (obj. of -i-) to . . . (obj. of stem-complex) (WM, FH, AB) 
Oi~(< 0-nd-)#o-things-2/i-cess.. . . -l-"&4 (fut., inc.cess., pf.cess.) learn, 

be in training, train 
/ xo-yi-cesa. . . .-'d-l (fut., inc.cess., pf.cess.) (3 only) . . . teaches (WM) 
Oe- 01 tdi-out. . . -'d'l (fut., inc., m-pf.) call . . . 's attention to . . . (FH) 
tdi-out. . .-'d-l (fut., pres., si-pf.) put into words, speak out (NT 148:3) 
01 tdi-oxxt-nd-yi-cess. . . .-'d-l (fut., inc.cess., pf.cess.) speak out to . . ., 

put into words for . . . (NT 204 : 4) 
01 idi-rco-things. . .-'d-l (fut.) tell ..., communicate knowledge with 

... (NT 42:5) 

368 NAVAHO GRAMMAB, 12.59.-12.60. 


•tah -tah -to* — -ta? do in series, count, read, 

(opt.) practice, teach, learn 

Nouns compounded with -tah: 

'atdo'S yita 1 pulse; blood-vessel-is-counted 

'olta' school, education, counting 

'olta'i, or y 6Uahigi- pupil, student; one-who-reads 

bd > 6Ud > i teacher ; one-for-whose-benef it -there-is -practice 

yi'go 'oltah college; very, extreme schooling 

iwltso'S yoltaH printed matter; paper-that-is-read-rep. 

Verbs compounded with -tah : 

Od 'a-i-yi-m-rec.ef. . . .-l-tah (fut., pres., yi-pf.) teach; reading-is -done - 

for . . . 
yim-rec.ef. . . .-l-tah (fut., pres., yi-pf.) go to school, count, read, do in 

graded series 
Otdf yini-recef.. . .-l-tah (fut., pres., yi-ipf.) read . . . to . . , 

12.60. The stem ~tH "instruct, guide, coach, demonstrate" is 
probably the same as -tf'l "move long, slender, rigid object" (12.31.), 
the idea being that the instruction is in a continuous line. 

-ti'l — -tin -tj-h -tq^ instruct, guidei coach, 

-tf-h (°pt.) show, demonstrate 

Nouns compounded with -tf'l referring to instruction : 

'aUidi-ti'h understanding, comprehension (YME 18) 

"'aftVfofyh investigation 

'asdz^-* ncmitinigt- woman teacher; the-woman-who-instructs 

'frde-fyhi' diagnostician, seer, diviner 

naritin instruction, teaching, advice 

naritini teacher; one-who-instructs (YME 90) 

Verbs compounded with -tf'l : 

Oe- di-. ..-tyl (fut., pres., si-pf.) guess (NT 216: 17, 218:2, 220:15) 
Oi-(< 0-na-)0-dini-pxo\.. . ,-l-tpl (fut., cont., si-pf.) teach ... (as a 
process), instruct . . . (obj.) in . . . (obj. of -*-) (FS 9; YM 210; NT 
222:11, 234:11) 
Oi-(< 0-nri-)na-'a-theme-m-uni. . . ,-l-tj-l (fut., pres., s^-pf.) instruct in 

. . . , demonstrate . . . 
Oi-(< 0-nd-)na-0-dini-get stuck. . . -l-tyl (fut., pres., si-pf.) instruct . . . 

in ... (NT 170:1) 
na-O-'a-m-uni. . . . -tf'l (fut., pres., si-pf.) show to ... , teach by showing 
OM- y a-theme-di-cess. . . .-tf-l (fut., inc.cess.,pf.cess.) comprehend, under- 
stand (YM 208) 


13. Throughout this work repeated references have been made to 
the effects of speech diversity on Navaho forms. Such effects have 
sometimes obscured meaning and choice of form, at other times they 
account for alternant forms, and at still others, they make inter- 
pretation and analysis almost impossible. In this chapter the known 
phases of diversity are brought together, primarily to outline the 
problems posed by Navaho, both within the language itself and in 
its relationship to other Athabaskan languages. The summary of 
questions brought out by this work obviously includes others of 
interest not only in the reconstruction of Athabaskan, but even in 
the contributions of American languages to linguistic theory in 

13.1. The occurrence of diversity in Navaho speech was noted in a 
preliminary paper in 1945. 1 At that time the problems were formu- 
lated and partially illustrated, but there was no opportunity to 
develop the discussion insofar as prefixes and contractions con- 
tributed to it because the grammar was not available. As I reread 
that article in the light of present knowledge, I withdraw a minor 
suggestion to the effect that the contraction of da-plural and yoh- 
D2 continuative to either dah- or daoh- might distinguish the 
momentaneous from the other continuatives. 2 I have no reason to 
believe that there is a distinction. 

13.2. Moreover, I think that the two paradigms of 8.2 of that 
work may be independent. If so, the paradigm of the second 
column under "N Brothers'* may be the cessative for which the 
N Brothers may have had incorrect forms, or which may have been 
improperly recorded. All forms were approved at the time by the 
whole group of students who were very critical. I have never since 
found 'a- instead of 'a- used with -Ifrh (pres.) or -la*h (past) "do, 
make," and it seems as if the two were confused (op. this work 
10.80b, 10.80c, 10.80e.). 

13.3. In reviewing the entire problem of diversity several major 
relationships emerge. The Navaho themselves formulate two of 
these when they refer to ^-speakers and zos-speakers. The first is the 
problem of aspiration and its significance, the second is the question 

1 Reichard 1945 
3 Ibid., p. 164 


370 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 13.3.-13.7. 

of sibilant variation. Since ^-speaking is related to augmentation 
and exaggerated emphasis (8.92.), it may be that the Navaho con- 
sider those persons who exaggerate the articulation oi h or x as 
"affected" or even "raving." As a matter of fact, this type of speech 
has a great many ramifications, as we have seen. By zos-speakers 
the Navaho mean those who use zas for yas "snow," smd in this 
phrase they are formulating the sibilant problem which is broad and 

13.4. In addition to these major types of diversity there are the 
vowel problem, the n-problem, and the effects of contraction which 
are intricately interwoven. In the discussion that follows pro- 
nunciation, morphology and etymology are not separated, but I 
will attempt rather to interpret what all have to offer to the solution 
of the major problems of interrelationship. 

13.5. The difference in pronunciation of vowels is perhaps no 
greater than in other languages, yet it seems to me that it has 
significance not formerly pointed out. The change from a to i, or the 
reverse, has an intermediate stage e under the influence of assimila- 
tion, as be'eta* < bi'ata* "his alienable feather" (5.1.). In some con- 
tracted forms Ve- < 'a-beyond-'a-i subj.-yi-cont. is definitely 
crystallized, whereas in others there are alternants, Vi- or Ye- < 'a- 
beyond-'a-i obj.-yi-cont. (10.76b.). e may result from some influence 
of n, and alternants like dime, dicni, and dicnf "I say" are common 
(3.51, and Reichard 1945, p. 164). Obviously e of be'etia? and of 
dicni are not of the same order. 

13.6. The change of vowels forming vowel clusters or a new vowel 
is illustrated by dai-, dei- sometimes heard (though probably in- 
correctly) as dc- < da-pl.-i/i-3 obj.-^-cont. (10.84a, cp. also 10.93b, 
L0.101, 10.103.). Most of my informants consider ai and ei "the 
lame," but the speakers at Pinyon were insistent in correcting me 
'or saying ai t more usual at Ganado, for ei. Since they noticed the 
light deviation and since the difference between i and e is dem- 
mstrably a matter of contraction in some cases, there may be 
tome point in trying to determine what these derivations are in a 
ield wider than Navaho. 

13.7. Changes that illustrate the fluidity of vowels occur in con- 
lection with the subordinating suffix -go. xa'dte "why" is an 
nterrogative form derived from -t£ "be." Usually when -go is affixed 
he form is xa'dtego or xa'dti'go. The stem vowel e sometimes be- 
somes d in the contraction: xa'dtdo or xa'dteo < xa'dii-go (NT 32 : 15, 
?h 28). Similarly, td' 'dhoti "it is exactly so, it is correct, it is the 
ame;" which usually combines as td' 'dkotfrgo, sometimes becomes 
i' 'dkotdo (NT 230:4). 

13.8.-13.13. SPEECH DIVERSITY 371 

13.8. This sort of change is not confined to e, as exemplified by the 
stem -U "it is done to, made" : to- 'odatg- < to' 'ddaff-go or to- 'ddatfgo 
"they just do it thus" (NT 434:9); fa* 'dtehpgi 'it'ao (< 'dtj-go) 
"making everything just as it was" (NT 22:31). In fo- 'odafy- 
(probably to- 'odafg*) f is lost in favor of o of -go, but its effect is 
apparent in the nasal quality and length of g\ No explanation of a in 
'if do from 'dffgo is apparent, unless it be the effect of the nasaliza- 
tion. Unpredictable changes of this kind must be kept in mind in 
any attempt to explain vowel change from language to language. 

13.9. More easily understood from the examples in Navaho are nd 
"saying" (NT 20:25) from nio < nrgo (NT 16: 17, 20:25, 22:7, and 
my own texts). 

13.10. Vowel loss and its effect on the "syllable" is also important. 
Prefixes with initial n and vowel of several types — a, i, a, % — may be 
reduced to n or n, it being sometimes impossible to decide from the 
existent forms what vowel is lost. This is one explanation of syllabic 
n, but it is obscured by the alternation of vowels a and i when 
several "syllables" of the type na- > ni-, nd- > ni- occur in juxta- 
position (3.7, 10.36, 10.38.). The last change seems to be formal or 
"mechanical;" perhaps it is "rhythmic alternation." 

13.11. Of general interest in western North America is the change 
of a consonant stop to a glottalized stop or a continuant, since many 
changes of this sort occur in many languages, not all of the same 
family. In Navaho the change from stop to glottalized stop may be 
caused by the juxtaposition of two vowels in a particular setting — 
CV-'VC > CVC, the vowels concerned being a or i (3.13, 3.41.). 

13.12. Still another effect of contraction on the vowel is the 
change of tone ; a low tone may become high when contracted with 
n, the n being evident only in the high tone. This effect will be 
summarized under 13.35-13.43. 

13.13. The question of sound (or "syllable") dominance, as it 
relates to the kind of vowel, as well as to the tone and quantity was 
discussed in 10.49-10.54. Other examples of vowel dominance are 
illustrated by diversity, in one case a dominates, in another o takes 
precedence. The first example is concerned with the second dual 
pronoun -oh-, 'a-beyondis quite obviously affected by yi-continua- 
tive and becomes '*'-. However, D2 'oh- shows no effect of yi-con- 
tinuative but results from 'a-beyond-?/i-cont.-oA-D2 subj., and can- 
not be formally distinguished from 'oh- < 'a-i pronoun-yt-cont.-oA- 
D2 subj. I have found no examples of diversity in arriving at these 
forms; they are fixed and regular. On the other hand, the effect of 
-d-optative, which has a particular kind of dominance is not uniform 
as the two paradigms of 10.76d. show. In the first of the order 'ayo*- 

25 Eeichard 

372 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 13.13.-13.18. 

< 'a-beyond-s/i-o-opt., a is not contracted with o, but in what 
appears to be an alternant form, the contraction results in a form of 
the order V- (10.76d.). 

13.14. If we now return to the second person dual pronoun -oh-, 
we find diversity in the following : 

prog. D2 'd*fc- or '6-h~< 'd-thus-^-prog.-ofc-D2 subj. 10.80. 

cont. D2 ndh- or ndh- < nd-back-(nd-)o/i-D2 subj. 10.94c. 

cont. D2-4 nd'ah- or nd'<5/i-< nd-back-'a-i obj.-(nd-)oA-D2 subj. 10.94c. 

prog. D2 be-h~ or bd-h- < 6i-(3)obj.-nd-against-^-prog.-o/i-D2 subj. 

cont. D2 b£h- or boh- < 6t-(3) obj.-nd-against-(nd-)-oft-D2 subj. 


13.15. These examples show that either a or o may -dominate; 
either indicating its identity by initial, tone, or quantity. For 
instance, 'd-h- shows the influence of -oh- by its length, 'oh- or *&h- 
shows the influence of 'a- by initial -, tone or tone and length. 
Compared with other alternant forms of the same order are : 

prog. 2 'd*- or 'v- < 'd-thus-t/i-prog.-n-2 subj. 10.80. 

cont. 1 'dc- or 'dc- < 'd-thus-(nd-)c-l subj. 10.80b. 

cont. 2 'dn- or 'ini-< 'd-thus-(nd-)back-n-2 subj. 10.80b. 

cont. 3-3 '*•- or Hyi- < 'd-thus-2/£-3 obj.-(nd-)back 10.80b. 

2/t-pf. 1 'd*- or 'i*-< 'd-thus-yi-prog.-c-l subj.-ni-compl. 10.80c 

2/t-pf. 3-3 'dy{- or '(■- < 'd-thus-^-3 obj.-^-prog.-ni-compl. 10.80c. 

yi-jif. by 3 'dyi-- or V-- <C 'd-thus-yi-prog.-m-compl.-^-3 ag. 10.80c. 

yi-pf.3 by 1 'd'C- or'S-c-< *d-thus-^-3 subj.-^-prog.-m-compl.- c-1 ag. 

cont. by 1 '6*c- or H-nc- < 'd-thus-yi-rec.ef.-ni-rec.ef.-c-l ag. 10.80i. 

13.16. These are all concerned with d in combination with other 
sounds and the variations may result quite reasonably from a 
difference in the grouping of the prefixes as explained in 10.55- 
10.58. The important point here is that speakers do not agree on the 
kind of contraction resulting from 'a- plus another prefix. 

13.17. The following illustrate differences in decisions as to when 
contraction with resultant vowel change sets in; 

m-pf. 2 ndini- or ndyini- < nd-back-m-pf.-n-2 subj.-m-compl. 

s*-pf. 3-3 nd-z- or ndyiz- or n&iz- < nd-back-yi-3 obj.-fii-pf.-(nd-) 

cont. 3-3 yfr- or yv- or yiyi- <C yi~§ obj. of "against"-wd-against-i/£- 

3 obj. of stem- (rid- )against 10.95h. 

13.18. Other examples of this sort are apparent in the paradigms, 
but outstanding is the fact that, whatever the extent of variation 
may be, whether of indecision about contraction or vowel domina- 
tion, many of the prefixes involve a high tone. It is probable, there- 
fore, that each element of the prefixes isolated, as 'd-thus, Oi-(nd-) 

13.18.-13.22. SPEECH DIVERSITY 373 

against, 2/^-m-reciprocal effect, is a compound that influences the 
way in which the equation of contraction may be set up. This result 
seems to me to justify the procedure here adopted for analysis. 

13.19. Probably of comparable order, but not readily determin- 
able is the variation yd -or ywi*- in names of for insects and worms. 
In contraction the effect of the labialized vowel on a consonant, 
making it a labialized consonant, is demonstrated elsewhere, as for 
example, in the variants xoi- and xwi'- < xo-things-yi-cess. (NT 
68:13, 74:6, 434:24). It is reasonable to suppose, therefore, that 
yo~ or ywv- is a compound of yd- and some other prefix, possibly nd- 
or ni-y but examples are too few to make conclusions on this point 
fruitful. The fact that the bound element yd-away from speaker 
(7.9.) also appears as ywv- in y6-yahgo r or ywi'-yahgo* "downward 
(he rolled)" (NT 132: 14; WM) supports the theory that the change 
of consonant and vowel is general rather than specific. 

13.20. Incidentally this reasoning leads me to a possible explan- 
ation of the pattern of a feature of nominal prefixes. Many of them 
have a high tone, even if the "noun" to which each is most obviously 
related has a low or low long vowel. I would look for proof in com- 
parison with other languages that such a theoretical prefix as Ap- 
pertaining to the foot (independent form -&e*') was derived from a 
basic element ke- (possibly ki-) and had combined with something 
like wa-against. Besides this deduction is the added fact that when 
"nominal" prefixes of the formCV- are used with a verbal form, the 
effect of an inflective prefix (nd~) is evident (5.39.). 

13.21. To return to other types of vowel (and possibly consonant) 
loss, two "syllables" of type CV may combine to one: le*j be* xaxa*- 
Ika-di or h'j be* xcvlkadi "shovel, spade, that-by-means-of-which- 
soil-is-spread-out-in-place" (YME 78); tcaxalxe*l or tca*lxe*l "dark- 
ness;" ttoh be* naxaldjo'lr or tioh be* na*ldjo*lv "pitchfork, that- 
by-means-of-which-hay-is-spread-about-in-space ;" xatso'olya'l or 
xatso'lya-l "flash lightning." In forms of this type a whole syllable is 
lost, as is indeed often the case with verbal prefixes, and in this 
respect the glottal stop may be lost as well as x. 

13.22. In various parts of the analysis aspiration has been shown 
to be effective in particular ways. Perhaps the most obvious of 
these is the variation of A, a slight aspiration compared with the 
continuant x with prolonged heavy aspiration. The voiceless stops 
t and k are sometimes so strongly aspirated as to become x (3.15.): 
tadidvn or xddidvn "pollen;" to*cdodv or xo*cdodi* "poorwill;" 
tokg'i or xokg'i "lantern, that-which-is-water-fire;" tinldi or xinldi 
"Gila monster;" kg'nike or xoniUe "fireplace;" kone'cgic or xone'cgic 
"poker;" biketsoh or bixetsoh "his great toe;" bikeyah or bixeyah 


374 NAVAHO GBAMMAR 13.22.-13.26. 

"country, his, their land;" 'qs bindkd- or' qr bindxd- "put it in 
(paperbag);" bikdddyd or bixddeyd "I started after it." 

13.23. The change from k to x in these examples is due to emphasis 
on the aspiration of the consonant which sometimes becomes so 
exaggerated that the original sound is lost. In the following ex- 
amples there is a double influence, of preceding h in addition to the 
aspiration of the stop: bi'hddvlja < bi'h kddvljah "let us hunt deer" 
(NT 32:4); nahg (< nahkQ-) sidd "she sat there at the side" (NT 

13.24. An interesting phase of the verb stem is notable in this 
connection. A study of vocabulary shows that almost all stems with 
theoretical x initial are really stem-complexes of the form -l-x~ 
initial (4-y- > -lx~ 3.80.), but two stems -xqs "itch;" and -xah 
"winter, year passes," are not of this type. -x$s "itch" is an aspirated 
alternant of -kqs "itch." I have found no form of the stem -xah of 
the type -kah> but possibly some relative exists in other languages. 

13.25. Suggestions have been made to the effect that certain 
3uffixes, particularly those with vowel initial, may help to recon- 
struct the character of a stem final (3.133.). Examples may be found 
under 3.39, 5.23-5.31, 11.31-11.32, 11.90. 1 have taken the position 
that x is an initial, h a final, and have insisted that there are at least 
two phonemes in relation to these two sounds. The following 
Bxamples show that the differentiation, at least as historically 
determined, is not invariable ; in each case the more frequently heard 
Eorm is given first : 

'asinisi-hic (DD) or 'asinisi-yic (FH) are you making a mistake ? (~si-h 

xd'hgd'ci- or ocd-ho-ci'' (NT 204:12) "my! it is awful! there are a great 

many ! ' ' (a term of exaggeration corresponding with ' 'awful, awfully, 

terrible" in English) 
tcahv ovtcayi or tcdi crybaby (5.23, 5.26, 5.27.) 
ts&hfr or ts&yfr surely it must have been a rock (11.31.) 
nahgd' or naho* (EW 90: 21) toward the side 
xd'hgd' or xd*K6- when in the future 

13.26. These forms show that the aspiration problem is related to 
the instability of y, g, y, and zero— in tseyfr and tcayi, tse and tea are 
interpreted as open syllables, rather than as ending in h, a more 
jommon interpretation. In the following the problem is not exactly 
;hat of h, but analogous in that g or y may become - when final ; 3 
ifr'o* tdinlye-d (< ttfr'gfr) "go outside!" In the example tcidi bito-gi 
[< bito*'igi) "gasoline" the same process has operated in respect to 
bhe stem with glottal stop final (-to fi "liquid") as happens when h is 
i final and contracts with a following suffix with vowel initial, 

3 Reichardl945p. 165 

13.26.-13.30. SPEECH DIVERSITY 375 

tcdi < tcahi "crybaby;" tld-h < ttahi "lefty" (5.27.). Here then as in 
verb stems h seems to be the "light" syllable final paired with - of 
the "heavy" syllable, and therefore the glottal stop may be a 
part of the A-problem. Perhaps this relationship may explain the 
peculiar forms : cike-'hdinida-l "sit behind me (on horse)" (NT 388 : 9) 
interpreted by WM as cike dahdinrda-l, and li- y hdi'lyis<lf' dahdi'lyis 
' 'they start off on horseback" (NT 298 : 20). 

13.27. The change from voiced g and y to - and x> respectively, is 
not inconsistent with the interpretation of h final because many 
stems, both nominal and verbal end in very lightly articulated 
voiceless consonants. 

13.28. A phase of the aspiration problem is the prefix with 
aspirated initial x 9 differing somewhat from x the problems of stem 
initials, stem finals, and prefix finals. The differences are doubtless 
more apparent than real, first because initials in Navaho are treated 
somewhat differently from finals, and second, because prefixes, 
especially verbal prefixes enter into much more complicated com- 
binations than other sounds. Initials tend to be voiceless, whereas 
they are voiced or have voiced equivalents when they have a position 
farther forward in the word or verb-complex (10.51-10.54.). The 
isolated forms of many prefixes *are similar, and indicate their 
differences of meaning and function only by changes that take place 
in combination with other prefixes. 

13.29. Most outstanding of these overlapping forms are the yi- 
prefixes (10.102-10.111e.), the m-prefixes (10.97-10.100c), the xi- 
prefixes (10.114-10.115c), and the si-prefixes (10.117-10.118h.). 
And not only do these simulate one another, but any of them may 
combine with others to result in similar forms which may be very 
confusing. Obviously several prefixes of other Athabaskan languages 
have in Navaho been reduced to yi-. Except for those related to 
other prefixes, especially of types no,-, ni-, twl-, ni-, xi-, and si-> there 
are few variants of compounded forms. In other words, ^-prefixes 
are quite thoroughly stabilized in their own right. The variant forms 
will be discussed under the other prefixes (13.30-13.54.). 

13.30. There are prefixes of the three basic types with x initial. 
Of these xa-out is stable, xi-repetitive action is unstable, and no- 
place has some variant forms. (I am omitting #i-change position 
because the analysis is doubtful.) The following are variants of xi- 
repetitive action : 

prog. 3-3 xi-yo'- or xi*yo m - or yiyo*- <a; obj.-^-prog. 

cont. 1 xec- or xic- < a?£ subj. 10.114c. 
cont. 4 xidji- or dji--K xi-rep.a,c.-dji-4:8ub}.-yi-cont. 10.114c. 
cont. i *ayi*- or 'i*- < 'a-i 10.114c. 

376 NAVAHO GRAMMAR 13.30.-13.35. 

cont. 3-3 xiyi*- or yiyi'- <C a? -yi-Z obj.-yi-cont. 10.114c. 
a-i-pf. 4 xidzi-z- or dzvz- < a? subj.-st-pf.-nt-compl. 

si-pf. by 1 xec- or xic-<^«i-pf.-rii-compL-c-l ag. 10.114e. 
inc. cess. 3 #v-oryt'-<^-cont.-yi-cess. 10.114h. 
inc.cess. 4 xidji-- or dji*yi'- <^-4subj.-^-cont.-?/vcess. 

10.1 14i. 
pf.cess. 3 w-or2/i--<C^-prog.-^t-cess. 10.114J. 

13.31. One type of variation concerns the instability of the first 
person form xec- or ode-; doubt about the vowel is probably due to 
bhe effect of sibilant c — such variation is sometimes found in si- 

13.32. The other variation is in the third and fourth person 
forms — xi- may survive, or may be reduced to yi-. This is true of the 
ndefinite form also, in the continuative a survives and xi- becomes 
yi-, or yr- may combine with 'a- and become 'r-. Differences in the 
:ourth person are almost certainly due to position, xi- and dji- are 
}oth theoretically initial in the verb complex, and when both occur 
;ogether, some compromise must be made. The forms show that it 
las not been incontrovertibly settled, and either form is accepted. 

13.33. Variants with zo-place are involved with ni- and st-pre- 
ixes(10.116h, 10,116s, 10.116t.). 

13.34. These conclusions, arrived at from the study of Navaho 
done, are interesting in the light of the following brief comparison 
yith Chiricahua 4 prefixes that seem to be reliable cognates : 

Navaho Chiricahua 


13.35. Time and again in this grammar the discussion of necessity 
las led to the influence of n : It was shown that n may be syllabic 
3.7.), that nasalized vowels may be lengthened into syllables ending 
n n, and n may otherwise affect a form in V when a suffix is added 
3.49-3.53.). The influence of n is quite the most difficult problem 
>f the prefix analysis, and has led to the determination of "inflec- 
ional" prefixes, especially (w4-)back, distinguished from (wa-)against 
10.25-10.26, 10.94c-10.95m.). ^-prefixes in combination with each 
)ther, and with yi-, xi-, xo- y and si-prefixes are still another major 
>roblem (10.97-10. 100c, 10.107-10.111e, 10.114f-10.114g, 10.115- 
L0.115c, 10.116d-10.116j, 10.116m, 10.117-10.118h.) 

4 Hoijer 1946c 











13.36.-13.40. SPEECH DIVERSITY 377 

13.36. In many of these categories there is speech diversity. 
Speakers vary in pronouncing a stem with nasalized vowel or with- 
out it; in changing a nasalized vowel to Vn, or in retaining the 
nasalization with n (5.15-5.16.). A few of many examples follow: 

y ati or 'ati suffering, sorrow, misfortune 

-dji* or -djf postposition "to a particular point" 

nW or nt^ past 

kingi or kjgi at, in the house 

bitc&dti-n "his doorway;" bitc€&t\-gi "at his doorway" (NT 272: 1) 

'atiidahndstq, or 'aUidahnasta-n Upper-mountain-ridge (cer. place name) 

£&• 'altso or td- 'altsg or td' 'altsoni "everything" 

-nah or -nq, possibly -nqh move intermittently, swallow. 

-ni-1 or -n\l say, tell (cp. 12.56-12.57.) 

13.37. Still another phase of the n-problem, especially in relation 
to other languages, is the noun stem with a preceding high tone 
derived from some form of n in other languages (5.18.). These stems 
seem, however, to be stable in all possessed forms. 

13.38. The following are some variants of verbal prefixes affected 
by n in some way or other : 

prog. 2 b6'-oxbi--<. bi-3 obj.-nd-against-2/i-prog.-n-2 subj. 10.95g 

prog. D2 bi-h- or bd-h- < 6t-3 obj.-nd-against-2/i-prog.-ofc-D2 subj. 


cont. D2 bdh- or boh- < bi-3 obj.-nd-against-(nd-)-o/fc-D2 subj. 10.95h. 

cont. 3-3 ye-- or yiyi- or yv- < yi-3 obj.-nd-against-yt-3 obj.-(nd-) 

(the first obj. is the obj. of -nd- 
against, the second is the obj. of the 
stem) 10.95h. 

cont. 3-i Hyi- or '»•- < 'a-i obj.-nd-against-(nd-) 10.95h. 

yi-pf. 2 b4-- or bi-ni- or bi°- < bi-3 obj.-nd-against-^-prog.-n-2 

subj. -(rid-) ([nd-] is used instead of 
-ni-compl.) 10.95J. 

cont. 1 -x4c- or -xic-K subj. 10.114f. 

cont. 3 -xi- or -xi- < -(nd-) 10. 114f.) 

13.39. In this set of variants the doubt about vowels in the 
second persons represents the conflict between nd- and ni-. If the 
prefix is